Report Shows A Third Of 1999-2004 Child Deaths Preventable

By: The Associated Press
By: The Associated Press

(AP) -- About a third of the 1,506 children who died in West Virginia between 1999 and 2004 should still be alive today.

A report by the West Virginia child fatality review team shows motor vehicle crashes accounted for 237 of the potentially preventable deaths. About 75 percent of those deaths involved children who were not wearing seat belts or helmets.

Of the 38 children who were victims of homicide, 26 died as a result of abuse. More than 80 percent of those children were under the age of 5.

The report blamed another 188 deaths on sudden infant death syndrome. More than half of those deaths were attributed to such risky behaviors as adults sharing beds with infants or mothers who smoke.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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