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Characteristics of low-speed vehicle run-over events in children: an 11-year review
  1. Bronwyn R Griffin1,2,
  2. Kerrianne Watt3,4,
  3. Linda E Shields1,2,5,
  4. Roy M Kimble1,2,6
  1. 1School of Medicine, The University of Queensland, Australia
  2. 2Queensland Children's Medical Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia
  3. 3School of Public Health, Tropical Medicine and Rehabilitation Sciences, James Cook University, Townsville, Queensland, Australia
  4. 4School of Population Health, University of Queensland, Australia
  5. 5Tropical Health Research Unit, James Cook University & Townsville Health Services District, Townsville, Queensland, Australia
  6. 6Queensland University of Technology, Australia
  1. Correspondence to Bronwyn Griffin, Queensland Children's Medical Research Institute, Royal Children's Hospital, Herston Rd, Brisbane, QLD 4006, Australia; b.griffin{at}


Objectives The purpose of this study was to investigate the characteristics associated with fatal and non-fatal low-speed vehicle run-over (LSVRO) events in relation to person, incident and injury characteristics, in order to identify appropriate points for intervention and injury prevention.

Methods Data on all known LSVRO events in Queensland, Australia, over 11 calendar years (1999–2009) were extracted from five different databases representing the continuum of care (prehospital to fatality) and manually linked. Descriptive and multivariate analyses were used to analyse the sample characteristics in relation to demographics, health service usage, outcomes, incident characteristics, and injury characteristics.

Results Of the 1641 LSVRO incidents, 98.4% (n=1615) were non-fatal, and 1.6% were fatal (n=26). Over half the children required admission to hospital (56%, n=921); mean length of stay was 3.4 days. Younger children aged 0–4 years were more frequently injured, and experienced more serious injuries with worse outcomes. Patterns of injury (injury type and severity), injury characteristics (eg, time of injury, vehicle type, driver of vehicle, incident location), and demographic characteristics (such as socioeconomic status, indigenous status, remoteness), varied according to age group. Almost half (45.6%; n=737) the events occurred outside major cities, and approximately 10% of events involved indigenous children. Parents were most commonly the vehicle drivers in fatal incidents. While larger vehicles such as four-wheel drives (4WD) were most frequently involved in LSVRO events resulting in fatalities, cars were most frequently involved in non-fatal events.

Conclusions This is the first study, to the authors’ knowledge, to analyse the characteristics of fatal and non-fatal LSVRO events in children aged 0–15 years on a state-wide basis. Characteristics of LSVRO events varied with age, thus age-specific interventions are required. Children living outside major cities, and indigenous children, were over-represented in these data. Further research is required to identify the burden of injury in these groups.

  • Low speed vehicle run-over
  • child pedestrian
  • injury
  • driveway injury
  • child injury

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