A new study from Canada finds and suggests that pregnant women who drive have a higher risk at being involved in a serious vehicular accident, especially for those who are already in their second trimesters.
What does this mean? Does it mean that pregnant women should stay away from the driver’s seat until they give birth?
According to research, 1 in every 50 pregnant women will be involved in a serious accident.
The Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences’ researcher Dr. Donald Redelmeier authored the study, and examined over 500,000 pregnant women in the course of four years before and after giving birth. And the results are astounding – 1 in every 50 are likely to be in a severe car crash.
Apart from this, a pregnant woman who is a passenger in a car also has a 42% increase of miscarriage if the car gets in to an accident. The comparison was made between the time that the women were in their second trimesters, and when they were not pregnant.
According to Redelmeier, women who move past the first trimester are found to have a false sense of security. And this, combined with exhaustion, insomnia, back pain, and the feeling of a more hectic life than what they are used to, can result in the driver being less focused to the task at hand. And it is a known fact that distracted driving is the leading cause of accidents all over the world.
However, it doesn’t mean that you need to walk for blocks or hire a driver. Pregnant women can still drive, but need to be aware of the factors that can cause them to lose focus and be involved in an accident. Note that the study does not deem a pregnant driver as less capable of driving safe. Here are some tips that can be followed to prevent accidents:
Always wear seatbelts. Seatbelts can draw the difference between life, death, and permanent disability in the face of a severe accident. Thus, it is always best to put them on. The recommendation is to wear the horizontal portion below the abdomen, and the diagonal portion across the sternum.
Ensure your airbags are enabled. While it has been found that airbags can cause injuries, but again, in an accident, it can help reduce the impact on the driver and the unborn baby.
Adjust the steering wheel to avoid contact with the belly. Whenever possible, position the steering wheel so it is not in direct contact with the belly. The chances of the being rear-ended (or the pregnant driver rear-ending someone else) are high nowadays, and so it is important to ensure that your belly won’t hit any hard surfaces in the event that an abrupt stop is needed.
Don’t drive in dangerous, extreme conditions. These conditions make driving dangerous for all kinds of drivers, and while there are ways and suggestions on how to safely maneuver around them, it is still advisable to avoid it.
If you or a loved one has been a victim of a car accident that leaves you injured, the Dallas car wreck lawyers of W.T. Johnson will be glad to help you build your case.