Saying that, "We were seeing a disproportionate number of African American and Hispanic children coming into the hospital with severe crash-related injuries," Dr. Rebeccah Brown of Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center was part of a team that created a safety program called Buckle Up for Life in 2004 that centers on reducing injuries to this young and vulnerable group in car accidents.
The program has just received a welcome boost, with Toyota Motor Corporation's announcement this past Tuesday of a $1 million contribution to support Buckle Up's national expansion.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that car crashes are a leading cause of death in both the African American and Hispanic communities, and that inadequate seat belt use and, often, faulty installation or lack of child safety seats, are major factors in many fatal accidents.
That is where Toyota would like to see the money it is contributing put to use, with the company specifically mentioning the provision of free child restraints and car seat inspections.
"We appreciate the significant input and support that Toyota has provided," said Dr. Brown, noting that the contribution will help Buckle Up reach "a wider audience around the country."
The program, which began in Cincinnati, branched out to Los Angeles last year, and has ambitious plans for expanding further. Chicago, Denver and San Antonio are all expected to have Buckle Up centers before the end of 2012.
Related Resource: Fender Bender, "Toyota contributes $1 million for national expansion of safety program" June 29, 2011