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Introduction The hazards of life in earlier times even a few decades ago were much greater than those of today Human ingenuity and modern technology have made life safer more comfortable and longer by reducing the risk with which mankind must contend but reducing risk is not without its own risk Automatic restraints are required to be equipped in all 1990 and newer model passenger cars per Federal regulations Transportation 1990 This implementation of automatic safety belts does not come without its risk oppositions claim that these belts can be deadly This study addresses safety belt usage on a college campus in cars with automatic belts versus manual lap belts and whether gender differences increase or decrease usage and if legislation and enforcement fluctuate usage A survey will be administered to college students that they might provide some explanation to the above questions Literature Review Traffic accidents are the leading cause of death among people age 5 to 34 and are responsible for more than 2 million disabling injuries per year Sleet 1984 Numerous studies have shown that safety belts substantially reduce the number of deaths and serious injuries resulting from motor vehicle accidents Despite the incontrovertible evidence and the simplicity of the protective action wearing rates are low in the absence of legislation requiring safety belt use Even where legislation has been introduced the evidence suggests that initially high wearing rate but without highly publicized enforcement however most state use rates stabilized at about 40 - 50 Administration 1996 Public information and education programs without accompanying enforcement have been ineffective in changing post law stabilization rates Because the consistent use of a vehicle safety belt would likely reduce fatalities and injuries from vehicle crashes by at least 50 Federal Register 1983 the large-scale promotion of safety belt use is an urgent and critical target for primary prevention in public health Research has found that from 1980 to 1990 safety belt use among
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