Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers: Obesity and Greater Risk of FatalityJanuary 19, 2017
Being significantly overweight comes with a great deal of health risks, including diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and certain types of cancer. According to researchers from the University of California Berkeley’s Safe Transportation and Research Education Center, obesity can also significantly increase the risk of fatal injury in a car accident. Considering the percentage of Americans who are overweight, which is over 30 percent of the population, this is yet another dangerous consequence of the obesity epidemic.
Researchers found that when an obese driver is involved in a car accident, a seat belt cannot provide adequate protection to the driver’s lower body because it does not fit snugly across the abdominal region. The extra pounds around a person’s mid-section not only prevent the seat belt from properly fitting across the body, but it also holds the upper body back. In addition, according to another study from a University at Buffalo, obese drivers are generally less likely to use their seat belts compared to normal weight drivers.
Safety Features Must Reflect the Population
Study researchers also found that the typical passenger vehicle is designed for people who fall within the normal weight range, which brings up an important public health issue, considering the ongoing obesity problem in the United States. The study found that the typical crash-test dummy used in test designing is 108 pounds for females and 172 pounds for males. Researchers suggest that car manufacturers may need to consider design changes that provide improved protection for obese drivers.
Researchers also found that overweight women are at even greater risk of a fatal car accident injury than obese men. In fact, one study shows that obese women are twice as likely to be fatally injured in a car accident than their male counterparts.
Baltimore Car Accident Lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton Seek Compensation for Injured Drivers
If you or a loved one has been seriously injured or fatally injured in a car accident, you are urged to contact the dedicated, compassionate Baltimore car accident lawyers at LeViness, Tolzman & Hamilton as soon as possible. We will discuss the events surrounding your crash and work tirelessly to defend and protect your rights. We will not stop until we have secured the optimal financial compensation for your injuries. To schedule a free consultation, call us today at 800-547-4LAW (4529) or contact us online.
Our offices are located in Baltimore, Columbia, Glen Burnie, and Towson, allowing us to represent victims of car accidents throughout Maryland, including those in Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Harford County, Howard County, Montgomery County, Maryland’s Western Counties, Southern Maryland, and the Eastern Shore, as well as the communities of Catonsville, Essex, Halethorpe, Middle River, Rosedale, Gwynn Oak, Brooklandville, Dundalk, Pikesville, Parkville, Nottingham, Windsor Mill, Lutherville, Timonium, Sparrows Point, Ridgewood, and Elkridge.