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Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center

SFGH Level 1 Trauma ProgramThe Level I Trauma Program

Injury Prevention & Personal Safety

Car Safety

Don't Drink and Drive

  • More than four out of every ten traffic deaths involve alcohol.
  • Even small amounts of alcohol affect your judgment, concentration, reaction time and your ability to drive.
  • If you drink, don't drive. If a friend or family member drinks, call them a cab or drive them home.

Wear Your Safety Belt

  • Wear your lap and shoulder belt correctly, low and snug across the hips, and the shoulder belt across your chest, not in front of your neck or face.
  • Do not put the shoulder belt under your arm or behind your back.
  • If your car has air bags, make sure you wear both the lab and shoulder belt for the best protection. Move the seat back as far as possible from the air bag.
  • Never place babies under one year old in the front sear of a car with a passenger-side air bag. Always keep babies in the back seat and facing the rear of the car.
  • All children are safest in the back seat using the safety belt or in a child safety seat.
  • Pregnant women should always wear the lap and shoulder belt, with the lap belt firmly placed under the belly and across the hips. By protecting Mom, the baby has the best chance of surviving a crash.
  • Buckle up every trip, every time, and every body!

Slow Down - Follow the Speed Limits

  • Nearly one out of three crashes where someone dies is related to speeding. Speeding makes it hard to steer safely around curves or objects in the roadway.

Walking in Traffic


Walk on the Sidewalk

  • Stay on the sidewalk and crosswalks. Avoid walking in traffic where there are no sidewalks or crosswalks. If you have to walk on a road that does not have sidewalks, walk facing traffic.

Cross at Intersections

  • Most people are hit by cars when they cross the road at places other than intersections.

Look left, right, and left for traffic

  • Stop at the curb and look left, right, and left again for traffic. Stopping at the curb signals drivers that you intend to cross. Cross in marked crosswalks and obey the signal.

See and Be Seen

  • Drivers need to see you to avoid you. Stay out of the driver's blind spot. Make eye contact with drivers when crossing busy streets.
  • Wear bright colors or reflective clothing if you are walking near traffic at night. Carry a flashlight when walking in the dark.
  • Do not let kids play near traffic or cross the street by themselves. Kids are small, and drivers may not see them if they run into the street.

Watch your kids

  • Children should not cross streets by themselves or be allowed to play or walk near traffic. Kids are small, unpredictable, and cannot judge vehicle distances and speeds.
  • When kids get older, teach them three things to do before they cross the streets:· Try to cross at a corner with a traffic light · Stop at the curb. · Look left. right, then left again to make sure no cars are coming.


From Rx for Injury Prevention, a collaboration of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, American College of Emergency Physicians, and the Emergency Nurses Association.

Please call 9-1-1 if this is a medical emergency. Please call Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center at (628) 206-8000 for general information.

For issues or questions other than medically related, you may email the Department of Public Health.