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Study explores injury risk in military Humvee crashes
Date:8/27/2012

A new report by researchers from the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy examines the risk factors for injuries to U.S. military personnel from crashes involving highly mobile multipurpose wheeled vehicles (HMMWVs), more commonly known as Humvees. According to the study, involvement in combat and serving as the vehicle's operator or gunner posed the greatest risk for injury. It is the first published analysis of factors associated with Humvee injury risk in a deployed setting, and is in the August issue of the journal Military Medicine.

According to the U.S. Department of Army, motor vehicle crashesboth privately owned and military vehiclesaccount for nearly one-third of all U.S. military fatalities annually and are among the top five causes of hospitalization for personnel.

"Nearly half of all those involved in motor vehicle crashes in Iraq, Kuwait, and Afghanistan from 2002-2006 were in Humvees at the time of the crash," said principal investigator Keshia Pollack, PhD, an associate professor with the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy and the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. "It's critical that we consider risk factors for these crashes, and use this knowledge to develop injury prevention programs and policies," she said. For example, given the association between being in a combat setting (versus crashes that do not occur during combat situations and injury), training for the military in combat-like situations through simulation or live-training exercises for all drivers could be important. Similarly, as gunners are often in an exposed position on top of the vehicle, equipment or devices that protect them from injury in rollover crashes should be explored.

The authors, who included researchers from the U.S. Army as well as the Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy, used data on U.S. Army vehicle crashes from 1999 to 2006 collected by the Army Safety Management In
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Contact: Tim Parsons
tmparson@jhsph.edu
410-955-7619
Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health
Source:Eurekalert

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