(Received 17 December 1999; accepted 5 July 2000)
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As a victim of his parents' suicide, a three-year-old boy was found dead on the lap of the passenger in the left front seat of a car that dove from the wharf and crashed into the sea. He died from the transection of trachea due to shoulder belt in the absence of the signs of drowning. The seat belt paradoxically injured the child on the passenger's lap in the traffic accident. The popular custom of Japanese parents of holding their children on their laps in cars is dangerous, while another custom of killing their children upon suicide of parents or couples should be socially and legally controlled.
Research Associate, Professor, Graduate School of Medicine, University of Tokyo, Tokyo,
Stock #: JFS15028J