Air-bag-associated fatal injuries to infants and children riding in front passenger seats--United States

MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 1995 Nov 17;44(45):845-7.


Air bags, when used as a supplement to safety belts, effectively prevent deaths and serious injuries in frontal motor-vehicle crashes. Air bags are standard equipment in most new cars; federal safety standards require that all new passenger cars and light trucks be equipped with both driver- and passenger-side air bags by 1999. The safety of air bags is well documented, and air bags have saved an estimated 900 lives since the late 1980s (1); however, special precautions are needed to safely transport children in vehicles equipped with air bags. Reports of eight deaths of child passengers in crashes involving air-bag deployment are of special concern because they involved low-speed crashes that the children otherwise might have survived. This report summarizes three of these eight cases (2).

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Accidents, Traffic / mortality
  • Air Bags / adverse effects*
  • Automobiles*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Craniocerebral Trauma / etiology*
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Safety
  • United States / epidemiology