Sunday, October 13, 2019

Latinos More At Risk While On the Road


A study by researchers at the University of Michigan reveals that Latino infants and toddlers are 10 times less likely to wear seat belts in cars compared to those of white children.

A separate study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in 2007 found that many black and Latinos have negative attitudes about seat belts, saying that seat belts are “just as likely to harm you as help you.”

According to the American Automobile Association (AAA), motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for Latinos from 1-34 years of age, and also show that Latino children are 60% more likely to die in crashes than non-Latino white children.

“Not everybody you think should be aware is aware of the importance of seat belts,” says Garcia, founding director of trauma services at his hospital.

Unfortunately, research on seat belt usage isn’t the only alarming statistic about risky behavior exhibited by Latinos on the road. As previously indicated on La Plaza, 54% of Latino teens admit to texting and driving, compared to 41% of white teens and 42% of African American teens, and texting and driving has been linked to about 6,000 deaths and half a million injuries caused by distracted drivers each year.

Programs like AT&T’s It Can Wait campaign try to raise awareness to help reduce the risk of texting and driving, while organizations like AAA and NHTSA want to overcome cultural and linguistic barriers by offering educational literature in Spanish about safety precautions to take on the road.

“The truth is a matter of life or death; it is more dangerous than drinking and driving,” says Susan Santana, AT&T Assistant Vice President of External Affairs. “It is a serious problem that we must address as a community.”

Fox News
USA Today

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