1997 South Dakota Motor Vehicle Traffic Accident Summary. William J. Janklow Governor

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1 South Dakota Motor Vehicle Traffic Accident Summary William J. Janklow Governor Prepared By Department of Transportation Accident Records In Cooperation With Department of Commerce & Regulation Office of Highway Safety

2 TABLE OF CONTENTS PAGE I. INTRODUCTION 5 South Dakota Statistical Summary...6 II. HISTORICAL TRENDS 7 Motor Vehicle Accidents...7 Alcohol Involvement...10 Restraint Usage...14 Cycle and Pedestrian Accidents...17 Holiday Counts...19 Severity of...21 Sex of Drivers...23 III. MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT PROFILE 24 Introduction...24 First Harmful Event...29 Manner of Collision...30 Highway System...31 County Summary...33 City Summary...33 Roadway Surface Conditions...33 Contributing Circumstances...33 Accidents by Time of Day, Month, and Day of Week...39 Drivers...43 Motorcycles...50 Pedestrians...53 Bicycles...55 IV. GLOSSARY OF TERMS 56

3 LIST OF TABLES TABLE PAGE 2-1 Fatality Rate Comparison South Dakota Yearly Comparison of Motor Vehicle Traffic Fatalities,, Accidents, Miles Traveled, and Registered Motor Vehicles Alcohol Involved Accidents as Percent of All Accidents A Persons Killed in Alcohol Involved Accidents by Age Accident and Arrest Activity Safety Restraint Usage Accident-Involved Drivers A Fatalities by Ejection Status for Motor Vehicle Occupants B Safety Restraint Usage by Killed and Injured Occupants Fatalities and to Motor Vehicle Occupants Under Five Years of Age A Safety Restraint Usage Under 5 Years of Age Motorcycle Accidents Pedestrian Fatalities and Bicycle Fatalities and Accidents During Holidays Fatalities and of Total Persons Fatalities and of Total Drivers Fatalities and of Total Passengers Fatalities and of Total Bicycle Drivers Fatalities and of Total Pedestrians Sex of Drivers Fatalities and Severity of of Drivers, Passengers, Pedestrians, and Bicyclists Fatalities and by Mode of Transportation Vehicle Types Involved in Accidents Fatalities and by Age Group First Harmful Event Manner of Collision for Accidents Involving a Collision Between Two or More Motor Vehicles Accidents by Type of Highway Reported Traffic Accidents - South Dakota Counties Counties Having More Than Two Percent of the Rural Fatal and Injury Accidents Traffic Accidents - South Dakota Cities Population 2500 and Over Roadway Surface Conditions Accidents by Time of Day Accidents by Month Accidents by Day of Week Age of Drivers in Accidents Age of Drinking Drivers in Accidents Licensed Drivers and Fatal and Injury Accident-Involved Drivers by Age Motor Vehicle Driver Contributing Circumstances Motorcyclists by Age Group Helmet Use by Motorcycle Drivers in Accidents Age of Pedestrians in Traffic Accidents Alcohol Involvement by Pedestrians Rural vs. City Pedestrian Accidents Age of Bicycle Drivers in Traffic Accidents...55

4 LIST OF FIGURES FIGURE PAGE 2-1 Fatality Rate Comparison Traffic Fatalities - Alcohol Related vs. Nonalcohol Related Traffic - Alcohol Related vs. Nonalcohol Related Fatal and Injury Accidents and DWIs Fatal Accidents Driver Safety Restraint Usage Fatalities by Travel Mode by Travel Mode Traffic Accidents by Highway System Type Fatal Traffic Accidents by Highway System Type Rural Fatal and Injury Accidents/Vehicle Miles Traveled Accidents by Time of Day Accidents by Month Accidents by Day of Week Drivers by Age Group - Fatal and Injury Accident-Involved Drivers Young Drivers - Fatal and Injury Accident-Involved Drivers Motorcyclists - Accident-Involved Motorcycle and Moped Drivers...51

5 I. INTRODUCTION The South Dakota Motor Vehicle Traffic Accident Summary was developed to provide an overview of the South Dakota traffic accident picture, as well as make frequently requested information available. Information from comprises the major portion of the book; however, basic historic trends are also provided for reference. The Motor Vehicle Traffic Accident Summary is divided into two main sections, Historical Trends and Motor Vehicle Traffic Accident Profile. The Historical Trend section provides information on alcohol involvement in motor vehicle accidents, severity of injury by record type and sex of drivers involved in accidents. This section also provides data on restraint usage and accident trends. The Traffic Accident Profile section details the accident picture for as well as a glossary of terms. The majority of the information in this book is provided by the Accident Records Section within the Department of Transportation. Current state law requires an accident report be filed for each motor vehicle traffic accident resulting in the death or injury of a person, or property damage to an apparent extent of five hundred dollars or more to any one person's property or one thousand dollars accumulated damage per accident. Law enforcement agencies provide the accident reports to Accident Records. These reports are available to the public for a fee of four dollars. Examples of reports available through Accident Records are: STANDARD REPORTS - These reports provide the user with a standard set of summary information for a preselected subset of all accidents, e.g., all accidents involving a drinking driver. PLOT MAPS - These maps supply the user with a graphic display on which the location of each accident in a given geographic area has been plotted on transparent paper and scaled to overlay maps provided by the Department of Transportation. SPECIAL REQUESTS - Special requests are answered using several computer packages, one of which is an on-line query system which provides almost immediate response to requests of a very specific nature. For additional information or copies, write or call: Accident Records Section 700 East Broadway Avenue Pierre, SD Phone: (605)

6 SOUTH DAKOTA STATISTICAL SUMMARY NUMBER OF REPORTED MOTOR VEHICLE TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS: 20,899 AMOUNT OF MOTOR VEHICLE TRAFFIC ACCIDENT PROPERTY DAMAGE: $79 million NUMBER OF MOTOR VEHICLE TRAFFIC ACCIDENT INJURIES: 8,161 NUMBER OF MOTOR VEHICLE TRAFFIC ACCIDENT FATALITIES: 148 FATALITY RATE PER 100,000,000 MILES OF TRAVEL: 1.88 PERCENT OF DRIVERS IN FATAL ACCIDENTS WHO HAD BEEN DRINKING: 27.8% NUMBER KILLED IN ALCOHOL-RELATED ACCIDENTS: 59 NUMBER INJURED IN ALCOHOL-RELATED ACCIDENTS: 1,024 NUMBER OF PEDESTRIANS KILLED: 6 NUMBER OF MOTORCYCLISTS KILLED: 9 NUMBER OF BICYCLISTS KILLED: 1 PERCENT OF LICENSED DRIVERS UNDER 25: 18.6% PERCENT OF ACCIDENT-INVOLVED SPEEDING DRIVERS UNDER 25: 46.3% PERCENT OF ACCIDENT-INVOLVED DRINKING DRIVERS UNDER 25: 39.4% NUMBER OF OCCUPANTS KILLED IN MOTOR VEHICLES: 132, 26 WERE WEARING A SAFETY RESTRAINT (EXCLUDES MOPED, MOTORCYCLE & SNOWMOBILE OCCUPANTS) NUMBER OF DWI CONVICTIONS: 5,542 (Source: Dept. of Commerce & Regulation-Driver Improvement) SEATBELT USE RATE OF ACCIDENT-INVOLVED DRIVERS: 81.2% NUMBER OF UNRESTRAINED OCCUPANTS UNDER 5 YEARS OF AGE KILLED IN MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENTS: 2 NUMBER OF PROPERLY RESTRAINED OCCUPANTS UNDER 5 YEARS OF AGE KILLED IN MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENTS: 0 ECONOMIC LOSS FROM MOTOR VEHICLE TRAFFIC ACCIDENTS: $302 MILLION 6

7 II. HISTORICAL TRENDS Motor Vehicle Accidents The preliminary death rates per 100 million vehicle miles traveled from for South Dakota, states surrounding South Dakota, and the nation are shown in TABLE2-1. The national rate has shown a decline over the last ten years. FIGURE 2-1 compares South Dakota with the national rate and two comparable rural states, North Dakota and Wyoming. The South Dakota rate has been adjusted to comply with changes made by the Department of Transportation in the computation of vehicle miles of travel. TABLE 2-1 FATALITY RATE COMPARISON State South Dakota Iowa Minnesota Montana N/A Nebraska North Dakota Wyoming National Note: Death Rate is the number of traffic fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled. TABLE 2-2 provides a yearly comparison of South Dakota's motor vehicle traffic accidents from 1965 through. Any comparison of motor vehicle accidents must be made with caution due to the changes in the definition of a reportable accident. For example, in the late 1970's the definition of a fatality caused by a motor vehicle accident was changed from the death occurring up to one year after the accident to death occurring within 30 days after the accident. There does not appear to be a single reason why there are fewer fatalities; however, the national 55 mph speed limit law initiated in 1974 and the increased efforts in the drinking driving area in 1981 have probably had the most impact. Other factors include improvements in the highways, safer vehicles, and traffic enforcement efforts. Using vehicle miles of travel, the death rate decreased to 1.88, a 17.9% decrease from the 1996 adjusted 2.24 rate. The 8,161 people injured is a 3.9% decrease from the 8,490 for 1996 (see TABLE 2-2). 7

8 3.5 FIG2-1 FATALITY RATE COMPARISON RATE PER 100 MILLION VMT's South Dakota North Dakota Wyoming National 8

9 TABLE 2-2 SOUTH DAKOTA YEARLY COMPARISON OF MOTOR VEHICLE TRAFFIC FATALITIES, INJURIES, ACCIDENTS, MILES TRAVELED, & REGISTERED MOTOR VEHICLES Total Accd. Rate 4 Miles 3 Traveled +(000,000) Registered Motor Vehicles +(000) Year Deaths Death Rate 1 Total Accd. Fatal Accd. Injury Accd. PDO 2 Accd ,685 10, ,880 6,941 3, ,072 10, ,087 7,529 4, ,286 12, ,250 8,721 4, ,612 14, ,396 10,450 4, ,921 16, ,584 12,762 4, ,492 16, ,395 12,581 4, ,705 16, ,152 12,633 4, ,718 17, ,267 13,381 5, ,774 14, ,321 10, , ,211 11, ,077 7,447 5, ,769 15, ,398 10, , ,423 15, ,840 10,727 5, ,603 18, ,013 12,827 5, ,861 18, ,263 12, , ,189 16, ,826 11,064 5, ,147 14, ,770 9,887 6, ,771 14, ,614 9,599 6, ,174 14, ,192 10,284 6, ,287 14, ,175 10,649 6, ,158 15, ,297 10,664 6, ,240 15, ,229 11,097 6, ,008 13, ,105 9, , ,221 13, ,173 8,803 6, ,579 14, ,455 10,239 6, ,828 15, ,605 10,266 6, ,261 15, ,820 10,114 6, ,310 16, ,830 11,049 6, ,813 17, ,112 11,917 7, ,410 18, ,525 13,021 7, ,540 19, ,711 13,556 7, ,323 19, ,543 13,679 7, ,490 21, ,653 15,858 7, ,161 20, ,478 15,293 7, Number of deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled. 2 Prior to July 1, 1973 the threshold for a reportable property damage only (PDO) accident was $100 to one person's property. July 1, 1973 the PDO amount was increased to $250. January 1, 1975, the PDO threshold definition changed to accumulated property damage of $250 or more. July 1, 1978 the PDO threshold was increased to $400 accumulated property damage. July 1, 1986, the PDO threshold definition changed to $500 damage to any one person's property or $1000 accumulated property damage per accident. 3 Miles traveled from years 1980 through 1991 have been revised to agree with the Highway Performance Monitoring System's (HPMS) miles traveled. The revised travel was provided by Data Inventory of the SD Department of Transportation. Note! This revision of the miles traveled has caused the Death Rates to be adjusted also. Current year may be adjusted and updated in next year's publication. 4 Number of accidents per 100 million vehicle miles traveled. 9

10 Alcohol Involvement Seventeen (28.8%) of the people killed in alcohol related accidents were teenagers. Alcohol involved accidents and injuries show a decrease in when compared to a 6 year (91-96) average (see Table 2-3). Alcohol statistics dating back to the 1970's show 1993 to have the lowest number of fatalities for any one year period and the highest number is 138 for the year of TABLE 2-3 ALCOHOL INVOLVED ACCIDENTS AS PERCENT OF ALL ACCIDENTS Total Accidents (1578) (1485) (1501) (1574) (1457) (1508) (1449) Fatal Accidents (57) (65) (47) (63) (60) (54) (50) Injury Accidents (784) (764) (736) (805) (735) (722) (656) PDO Accidents (737) (656) (718) (706) (662) (732) (743) Fatalities (62) (75) (55) (70) (70) (68) (59) (1253) (1231) (1207) (1286) (1175) (1170) (1024) NOTE: Alcohol involvement for Fatal Accidents is based upon a positive BAC result and/or Indication of alcohol use by at least one driver, pedestrian or bicycle driver as reported by the investigating officer. For Injury and Property Damage Accidents - It is based upon indication of alcohol use by at least one driver, pedestrian or bicycle driver as reported by the investigating officer. TABLE 2-3A PERSONS KILLED IN ALCOHOL INVOLVED ACCIDENTS BY AGE AGE & OLDER Unknown/Not Stated TOTAL

11 FIGURE 2-2 TRAFFIC FATALITIES Alcohol Related vs Non Alcohol Related ALCOHOL 39.9% NON ALCOHOL 60.1% FIGURE 2-3 TRAFFIC INJURIES Alcohol Related vs Non Alcohol Related ALCOHOL 12.5% NON ALCOHOL 87.5% 11

12 The following accident and arrest data is presented to monitor changes in alcoholrelated fatal and injury accidents and to compare changes with nonalcohol-related accident experiences (see TABLE 2-4). Alcohol-related fatal and injury accidents decreased by 9.0% while nonalcohol-related fatal and injury accidents decreased by 2.4% from the 1996 totals. The number of DWI arrests decreased by 9.8% from TABLE 2-4 ACCIDENT AND ARREST ACTIVITY FATAL ACCIDENTS FATAL & INJURY ACCIDENTS ALCOHOL RELATED NONALCOHOL RELATED ALCOHOL RELATED NONALCOHOL RELATED DWI ARRESTS* ,896 7, ,010 7, ,119 8, ,424 8, ,860 8, ,984 9, ,888 8, ,019 9, ,900 8,757 *Source: South Dakota Courts - The State of the Judiciary and Annual Report of the S. D. Unified Judicial System - January 1998 Based on Fiscal Year statistics FIGURE 2-4 presents the annual counts of DWI arrests, alcohol-related fatal and injury accidents, and nonalcohol-related fatal and injury accidents from 1989 through. FIGURE 2-5 presents the alcohol-related and nonalcohol-related fatal accident experience for the years of 1989 through. There were 50 alcohol-related fatal accidents during, which compares to 54 in The previous three-year average was 59 for the years of There were 706 alcohol-related fatal and injury accidents during, which compares to 776 in The previous three-year average was 813 or a 13.2 percent decrease in. Nonalcohol-related fatal and injury accidents in decreased (2.4%) when compared to 1996 and decreased 1.3 percent from the previous three-year average (94-96). There were 8,757 DWI arrests in fiscal year. This level is down 6.9% from the previous three-year average (94-96). 12

13 FIG 2-4 F&I ACCIDENTS AND DWIs DWIs NUMBER NON ALC-RELATED ALC-RELATED FIG2-5 FATAL ACCIDENTS NUMBER NON ALC-RELATED ALC-REL

14 SAFETY RESTRAINT USAGE, EJECTION AND CHILD INJURIES On January 1, 1995 the statute took effect requiring front seat occupants to be fastened by a safety belt system. The use of safety equipment is reported for all motor vehicle drivers and only those passengers that are injured. During, a record of 81.2 percent of the drivers in accidents were reported to be using safety restraints (see TABLE 2-5). Eighty-nine occupants were killed while not wearing any safety restraint, while twenty-four occupants killed were wearing lap and shoulder harness, none were wearing a lap belt only and 2 wore shoulder harness only, one was not properly restrained in a child safety seat and one was reported as other type restraint (does not include occupants of motorcycles, mopeds and snowmobiles). Sixty-two (47%) of the 132 killed occupants were either partially or totally ejected from the vehicle (see TABLE 2-5A). TABLE 2-5 SAFETY RESTRAINT USAGE ACCIDENT-INVOLVED DRIVERS USAGE RATE AGE % 28.6% 33.4% 67.4% 72.4% 74.1% % 25.6% 32.5% 69.5% 72.5% 73.0% % 28.8% 35.2% 71.2% 73.8% 75.2% % 37.4% 42.0% 77.3% 79.5% 79.3% % 44.5% 51.1% 80.6% 82.8% 83.2% % 46.4% 54.4% 82.3% 83.6% 85.0% % 48.9% 55.2% 83.3% 86.8% 86.0% % 46.4% 51.4% 83.8% 85.9% 84.6% 65 - Over 38.6% 39.1% 45.9% 80.9% 80.6% 81.9% Total 38.4% 40.0% 46.2% 78.2% 80.6% 81.2% (9,178) (10,752) (12,873) (21,465) (25,087) (23,896) TABLE 2-5A FATALITIES BY EJECTION STATUS FOR MOTOR VEHICLE OCCUPANTS (Excludes Motorcycle, Mopeds and Snowmobiles) Not Ejected 70 Partial Ejection 11 Total Ejection 51 Unknown Ejection 0 Total

15 FIGURE 2-6 SAFETY RESTRAINT USAGE ACCIDENT INVOLVED DRIVERS PERCENT USED YEAR TABLE 2-5B FATALITIES AND INJURIES TO MOTOR VEHICLE OCCUPANTS BY SAFETY EQUIPMENT USAGE Fatalities No Safety Equipment 89 2,642 Lap Belt Only Shoulder Harness Only 2 78 Lap Belt & Shoulder Harness 24 4,135 Child Restraint Used Properly 0 39 Child Restraint Not Properly Used 1 4 Other Type Restraints 1 13 Not Stated or Unknown TOTAL 132 7,580 Note: Motor vehicle drivers and passengers are considered occupants. Motorcycle, moped and snowmobile drivers and motorcycle, moped and snowmobile passengers are not counted in this table. 15

16 There were two fatalities to motor vehicle occupants from birth through four years of age during, which compares to two fatalities during 1996 (see TABLE 2-6). There were 124 children (birth through 4 years) injured in, which compares to 146 in 1996 and the three-year average of 138. Eighty-eight of the 124 injured children were restrained by a lap belt, a shoulder harness, a lap and shoulder harness or a child safety restraint used properly (see TABLE 2-6A). The Child Passenger Restraint System (SDCL 32-37) took effect on January 1, since that time there have been 30 deaths to occupants of this age group and two have been restrained by a child safety restraint properly used and none have been restrained by a lap belt or lap and shoulder harness. TABLE 2-6 FATALITIES & INJURIES TO MOTOR VEHICLE OCCUPANTS UNDER 5 YEARS OF AGE TOTAL SERIOUS SLIGHT NONFATAL YEAR FATALITIES INJURY INJURY INJURIES NOTE: Table includes passengers of Motor vehicles normally equipped with safety restraints. TABLE 2-6A FATALITIES & INJURIES TO MOTOR VEHICLE OCCUPANTS UNDER 5 YEARS OLD BY SAFETY EQUIPMENT USAGE Fatalities No Safety Equipment Used 1 26 Lap Belt Only 0 17 Shoulder Harness Only 0 2 Lap Belt & Shoulder Harness 0 33 Child Restraint Used Properly 0 36 Child Restraint Not Used Properly 1 4 Other 0 0 Not Stated or Unknown 0 6 TOTAL

17 Cycle and Pedestrian Accidents The following tables provide a yearly comparison of South Dakota's motorcycle, pedestrian, and bicycle accidents, injuries, and fatalities. During the last 10 years the average number of motorcycle involved accidents is 379 and 14 deaths per year. Licensed motorcyclists increased slightly during while fatalities decreased to the lowest number in 20 years. Moped accidents are included with motorcycle accidents. The number of motorcycle fatalities for includes one moped driver. Over the years this is only the second moped fatality and the number of injuries is small. See pages for additional motorcycle, pedestrian, and bicycle accident information. TABLE 2-7 MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENTS Motorcycle Accidents Motorcyclists Registered Licensed Year Total Fatal Injury Fatalities Motorcycles Motorcyclists , , , , ,590 34, ,102 37, ,045 41, ,265 43, ,418 Not Available ,255 45, ,956 45, ,905 45, ,036 45, ,800 44, ,421 44, ,942 45, ,719 46, ,133 46, ,389 47, ,173 48, ,822 49, ,155 49, ,704 50, ,561 50,205 17

18 TABLE 2-8 PEDESTRIAN FATALITIES AND INJURIES Year Fatalities TABLE 2-9 BICYCLE FATALITIES AND INJURIES Year Fatalities

19 Holiday Counts TABLE 2-10 provides a yearly comparison of South Dakota motor vehicle accident experience during major holiday observances. These counts are frequently requested. TABLE 2-10 ACCIDENTS DURING HOLIDAYS Holiday Total Hours Total Accd. Fatal Accd. Injury Accd. Fatalities MEMORIAL DAY* FOURTH OF JULY LABOR DAY *Nationally Observed 19

20 Holiday Total Hours Total Accd. Fatal Accd. Injury Accd. Fatalities THANKSGIVING CHRISTMAS NEW YEARS

21 SEVERITY OF INJURIES BY PERSON TYPE The following tables provide a yearly comparison of South Dakota's total injuries, drivers injuries, passengers injuries, bicyclists injuries and pedestrians injuries from 1988 through. The percentages are row percentages. Note: For definition of class of injury see page 20. TABLE 2-11 FATALITIES AND SEVERITY OF INJURIES OF TOTAL PERSONS Year Incapacitating Non- Incapacitating Possible Total Total Killed TABLE 2-12 FATALITIES AND SEVERITY OF INJURIES OF TOTAL DRIVERS Year Incapacitating Non- Incapacitating Possible Total Total Killed

22 TABLE 2-13 FATALITIES AND SEVERITY OF INJURIES OF TOTAL PASSENGERS Incapacitating Non- Incapacitating Possible Total Year Total Killed TABLE 2-14 FATALITIES AND SEVERITY OF INJURIES OF TOTAL BICYCLE DRIVERS Incapacitating Non- Incapacitating Possible Total Year Total Killed TABLE 2-15 FATALITIES AND SEVERITY OF INJURIES OF TOTAL PEDESTRIANS Incapacitating Non- Incapacitating Possible Total Year Total Killed 22

23 Sex of Drivers Table 2-16 provides a yearly comparison of drivers involved in motor vehicle accidents by sex of driver. The table also compares licensed drivers by sex. TABLE 2-16 SEX OF DRIVERS ACCIDENT INVOLVED DRIVERS MALE FEMALE MALE LICENSED DRIVERS FEMALE , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , Note: Accident Involved Drivers table does not include cases where the sex of the driver was not reported. 23

24 III. MOTOR VEHICLE ACCIDENT PROFILE Introduction This section profiles the reported motor vehicle traffic accidents for. Information will be given on where the accidents are occurring, when accidents happen, who is involved, and factors that contribute to accidents or why they are occurring. Column percentages may not total 100 percent due to rounding error. During, there were 20,899 reported motor vehicle traffic accidents, the majority of accidents being property damage only 15,293 (73.2%). Injury accidents accounted for 5,478 (26.2%) of the accidents, while 128 (0.6%) were fatal accidents. There were 8,161 persons injured and 148 persons killed in accidents during (see TABLE 3-1). TABLE 3-1 FATALITIES AND SEVERITY OF INJURIES OF DRIVERS, PASSENGERS, PEDESTRIANS, AND BICYCLE DRIVERS Incapac. Non- Incapac. Possible Total Nonfatal Total Fatalities Drivers 1, , , , Passengers , , Pedestrians Bicycle Dr Total 1, , , , Definition of : Killed: An injury which results in death. An injury caused death that occurs within 30 days of an accident is considered an accident fatality. Incapacitating: Any injury other than a fatal which prevents the injured person from walking, driving, or normally continuing the activities he/she was capable of performing before the injury occurred (severe lacerations, broken limbs or unable to leave the scene of the accident without assistance). Non-Incapacitating: Any injury other than a fatal injury or incapacitating injury which is evident to observers at the scene of the accident (minor lacerations, lumps on the head, abrasions and bruises). Possible Injury: Any injury reported or claimed which is not a fatal injury, incapacitating injury, or non-incapacitating injury (momentary unconsciousness, limping, nausea, or complaint of pain). 24

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