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HHS HealthBeat (June 2, 2014)

Dead from being there

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

A lot of kids die from riding in a vehicle operated by a drunken driver. Basically, they died just from being there.

At the Erie Family Health Center in Chicago, researcher Kyran Quinlan looked at national data on drunken driving deaths from 2001 to 2010, and children under 15 years old.

Quinlan says people might expect the drunken driver was in the other car, because who would drive drunk with a child? But he says his study finds that’s often not so.

“About two thirds of the time, the drunk driver is in the same vehicle as the kid who died in the crash.”

Quinlan suspects from earlier research that the driver often was the child’s caregiver.
 
This study in the journal Pediatrics was done with colleagues at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Learn more at healthfinder.gov.

HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: June 2, 2014