The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. Articles Car Accident Lawyer St. Louis: Obesity May Increase Chances of Injury

Car Accident Lawyer St. Louis: Obesity May Increase Chances of Injury

By Christopher Hoffmann  Dec. 21, 2015 10:21a

Obesity may be among the many factors that can increase the risk of fatal car accident injuries. A recent study conducted by the State Transportation Education and Research Center, University of California, suggest that people who are obese are more likely to suffer fatal injuries in car accidents when compared to those who are a healthy weight. The researchers have expressed concerns about the inability of the passenger cars to safely accommodate obese people.

Results of the study

For the purpose of research, data of fatal accidents from 1996 to 2008 was examined. In the said period, the data showed that there were more than 57,000 car accidents. Of these, weight and seat belt usage data was available for about 3,403 people. The study showed that about 18 percent of these were obese and about 50 percent were a healthy weight.

On the basis of research results, researchers concluded that those who have a BMI of 30-34.9 have a 21 percent higher risk of getting killed in a car accident when compared to people with healthy weight. People with a BMI of 35-39.9 had an even higher risk (51 percent higher) of fatal injuries. Those who are extremely obese (with BMI of 40 or higher) had an 80 percent higher risk of getting killed in a car accident compared to drivers and passengers of normal weight.

It was concluded that one possible reason behind this could be related to seat belt use. It was found that a third of those who died in accidents were not wearing a proper seat belt. Researchers concluded that severely obese people may be unable to wear a seat belt properly or they may find it too uncomfortable to wear.

Researchers also suggested that in a car crash, the lower body of an obese individual gets pushed forward more before the seatbelt engages due to the extra body mass and tissue which does not allow the seatbelt to fit well. In the event of a crash, the upper body is held back while the pelvis moves forward and this may lead to serious injuries.

Also, obese drivers and passengers are more likely to be suffering from other health conditions such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, cardiac problems and other health conditions. These conditions can severely affect a person's ability to recover from car accident injuries.

This gives us one more reason to maintain a healthy weight. It won’t just help you look good and stay healthy, but will also reduce your chances of suffering fatal injuries in the unfortunate event of a car accident. If someone close to you suffered fatal injuries in a car accident, you should contact an experienced car accident lawyer in St. Louis to discuss your case. Your attorney can help you better understand your legal options and help you obtain the compensaiton you are entitled to.

Call (314) 361-4242 to schedule a free consultation with an experienced attorney at The Hoffmann Law Firm, L.L.C. today.

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