The influence of driver licensure on child motor vehicle crash (MVC) deaths in Kansas was investigated. Fatalities from 1994-2000 due to MVCs were extracted from the Kansas State Child Death Review Board and the Fatality Analysis Reporting Systems databases. It was found that 14% (52 of 363) of child fatalities from MVCs in Kansas occurred in vehicles where the driver was not licensed. Driver licence status was associated with use of safety restraints, the victim's age and race, weekend driving and rural county location. All child deaths involving unlicensed drivers were preventable. New legislation on vehicle sanctions may be required to assist law enforcement. Safety restraint laws should be enforced and promoted to the public. Transportation options are necessary for unlicensed drivers, particularly if they have young children and live in a rural community. Thus, a multi-system approach involving law enforcement, accident prevention strategies and transportation options will save the lives of children.
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