AUTO SAFETY: Satcher Urges Black Youths to ‘Buckle Up’
U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher called on city mayors to encourage African-American youths to "buckle up," the AP/Nando Times reports. The move stems from a study by the Meharry Medical College in Nashville, Tenn., that found blacks in their teens and early 20s are half as likely to use seat belts as their white and Hispanic peers. Speaking at the National Conference of Black Mayors yesterday, Satcher also noted that traffic accidents are the leading killer of blacks ages 15 and under and the second leading cause of death among blacks ages 15 to 24. The surgeon general was joined by Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk, leader of a nationwide public awareness campaign on car safety. Calling such deaths a "silent epidemic," Kirk said, "These are lives and dollars thrown out the window because we are too lazy, too arrogant or too hip to buckle up." According to the study, comprehensive use of seat belts could save 1,300 lives, prevent 26,000 injuries and save taxpayers $2.6 billion each year (Parrott, 4/27).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.