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Accid Anal Prev. 1991 Feb;23(1):87-93.

Change in injuries associated with safety belt laws.

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  • 1University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center, Chapel Hill 27599-3430.


Statewide crash data bases from nine states were subjected to time series analyses to detect changes in injuries associated with onset of seat belt laws in the respective states. In each of 18 analyses involving drivers covered by the law observed casualties were below the number forecast on the basis of prior experience and assuming that no law had been enacted. In the case of others, not covered by the law, observed injuries were equally often above or below forecast. Relative to covered drivers not only were the numbers below forecast, but in 12 of the 18 instances there was a statistically significant indication of an abrupt decrease the month the law began.

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