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Non-collision injuries in public buses: a national survey of a neglected problem


Objectives: This prospective, nationally representative, multi-centre study was undertaken to assess non-collision injuries sustained by public bus passengers in Israel.

Methods: The emergency departments (EDs) of six medical centres, which participated in this eight month study, were chosen to represent both urban and rural catchment areas. All patients diagnosed with injuries sustained on a public bus not involved in a road traffic accident were promptly evaluated for mechanism and nature of injury and demographic parameters.

Results: The study cohort consisted of 120 patients (86 were female, 34 were male, age range 3–89 years). Over half were older than 55 years. The most common injuries were to the limbs, vertebral column, and head. The major mechanism of injury was acceleration/deceleration. Most patients were standing when they sustained the injuries. There were no fatalities, and 17 patients were admitted to hospital (9 of 17, 52% older than 55 years). Extrapolation to yearly national statistics suggests a probable total of 729 such injuries.

Conclusion: The significant injuries inflicted on passengers of public buses not involved in road traffic accidents warrant decisive preventative measures by transportation authorities.

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