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West Indian Med J. 2006 Oct;55(5):327-9.

The prevalence of seat belt use in Kingston, Jamaica: a follow-up observational study five years after the introduction of legislation.

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Department of Surgery, Radiology, Anaesthesia and Intensive Care, The University of the West Indies, Kingston 7, Jamaica.


An observational cross-sectional study conducted in Kingston in 2004 showed that seat belts were used by 81.2% of private motor vehicle drivers and 74.0% offront seat passengers. This was significantly improved compared to 21.1% and 13.6% respectively in 1996 before the introduction of legislation in 1999 (p < 0.001). Females were significantly more likely than males to wear seat belts, both when driving (92.5% vs 77.3%; p < 0. 001) and as front seat passengers (79.9% vs 66.3%; p < 0.001). Of the 2289 motor vehicles examined, all except one were equipped with seat belts. Rear passenger utilization of seat belts was not examined. Drivers of new vehicles were more likely than other drivers to use seat belts (p < 0.001). Male drivers, drivers of older vehicles and all passengers may require specific targeting in an educational and enforcement campaign if the maximum benefits of seat belt use are to be realized

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