Road traffic injuries are the 4th leading cause of injury in children and account for 12% of all injuries. In 2020, 677 children were treated for traffic related injuries at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital Trauma Unit, down from 769 in 2019. Passenger injuries were 22% of traffic injuries. Of the child passengers treated, only 13% were in car seats.
Most children in South Africa travel without being properly buckled up either in child safety seats or seat belts. If a child is not properly buckled up while in a car, they have a great chance of dying in the event of a collision or crash. Child safety seats and safety belts, when installed and used correctly, can prevent injuries and save lives. In the event of a car crash and there is a child standing in the car, that child can be thrown out of the car, like a missile and there is a 75% chance that the child will die! Parents and caregivers must always buckle up all children at every opportunity.