Obese Drivers Face Higher Risk of Dying in Car Crashes image

Studies show that obese drivers have increased chances of dying in a severe auto accident.

The study was posted in the American Journal of Emergency Medicine and shows that in a severe auto accident a moderately obese driver has a 21% increased risk of death and a morbidly obese face a 56% increased risk of not surviving. On the other hand, underweight and normal weight drivers have increased chances of dying in an accident compared to slightly overweight drivers.

“The severity and patterns of crash injuries depend on a complex interaction of biomechanical factors, including deceleration velocity at impact, seat belt and air bag use, vehicle type and weight, and type of impact,” declared Dietrich Jehle, MD, professor of emergency medicine at the University at Buffalo School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and at Erie County Medical Center.

He also added that although dummies used in car crash tests have helped saving numerous lives, they could save even more if they represented overweight individuals, besides normal-weight individuals. It is necessary extending the range of adjustable seats, as well as encouraging these individuals to buy larger cars with more space between the seat and the steering column.