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J Oral Maxillofac Surg. 1988 Oct;46(10):875-80.

California mandatory seat belt law: the effect of recent legislation on motor vehicle accident related maxillofacial injuries.

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  • 1Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University of California, San Francisco 94143.


This study evaluated the effects of the California mandatory seat belt law on prevention of motor vehicle accident (MVA)-related maxillofacial injuries. The records of 950 MVA-related injury victims treated at San Francisco General Hospital during comparable 3-month periods in 1985 (451) and 1986 (499) were reviewed to assess the effect of seat belt legislation on reduction of maxillofacial trauma. No significant difference was found in the injury severity scores between the two study periods. In addition, this study did not confirm the reported beneficial effect of seat belt legislation on reduction of MVA-related facial injuries in California. This finding was attributed to poor compliance with the law (50.3% compliance rate).

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