Drivers in New Hampshire may be surprised to hear that women are more likely than men are to incur serious injuries in an auto accident: 73% more likely, in fact, according to a report from City Lab. The trend was detected as far back as 2011 and continues unabated.
At first, experts claimed that seat belt designs were to blame, saying women’s short statures, their seating postures and other factors have kept the standard restraining device from providing full protection to women. But this is not the only factor. A more recent study, conducted by researchers at the University of Virginia, has found that crash tests are coming up with incomplete data. Female crash dummies, if used at all, do not accurately reflect differences in women’s physiology and anatomy.
Female crash dummies were only introduced in 2003. These are 5 feet tall and weigh 110 pounds: just outside the dimensions of the average woman. They also do not reflect the differences in fat distribution, pelvis shape and muscle strength. These differences affect how seat belts interact with one’s skeletal structure. It is imperative, then, that automotive safety experts begin to take these traits into account.
Drivers involved in motor vehicle accidents may be able to file a personal injury claim, but it will likely depend on the other driver’s negligence rather than on negligence of the automaker’s. Getting legal representation may be a good idea since personal injury lawyers might have a network of investigators and other experts to help strengthen a case.
Once it has been established that the other driver was distracted, drowsy or negligent in some other way, the lawyer may initiate settlement negotiations. If a settlement cannot be achieved, victims might choose to pursue the matter in court.