Brain Injury Fact of the Day – March 17, 2023

ST. LOUIS – March is Brain Injury Month.


The death rate in Missouri from motor vehicle crashes in rural areas is more than double that of urban areas. Accidents on rural roadways result in more deaths due to curvier roads, higher driving speeds, lower seatbelt use among some age groups, and limited healthcare infrastructure to meet the emergency needs of the person. Seatbelt use saves lives and reduces brain injuries.


More than 1,000 individuals were killed in Missouri traffic crashes in 2022. Nearly 60 percent of these individuals were not wearing their safety belts.


Research from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration shows that automotive occupants are 45 percent more likely to survive a crash if they are wearing a lap and shoulder belt correctly. Pick-up and light truck passengers are 60 percent more likely to survive a crash when correctly buckled.


Between 2009 – 2019, the death rate from motor vehicle crashes in rural Missouri counties was 21.3 percent. This is nearly double the death rate in urban counties from motor vehicle crashes at 10.8 percent. During this same time period, 35 percent of injuries from motor vehicle accidents occurred in rural Missouri, compared to 21 percent for of injuries occurring in urban counties.


Of the 126 licensed hospitals in Missouri, only 59 are located in rural communities. There are 55 rural Missouri communities without a hospital, which can result in delayed access to medical care following a motor vehicle crash and can prolong functioning deficits from a brain injury.


Missouri AgrAbility helps cultivate solutions for persons with disabilities, including Veterans, to be productive in farming, ranching, or other agribusiness. Qualifying disabilities include brain injury, chronic pain, arthritis, depression, and more.


For more information, contact the Brain Injury Association of Missouri for support, education, recreation and advocacy at or (800) 444-6443.