Study Finds Obese Drivers Face Greater Risk in Car Accidents

October 17th, 2016 Staff
Study Finds Obese Drivers Face Increased Risk in Car Accidents

In recent years, healthcare professionals have worked hard to raise awareness about health risks such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes that are commonly associated with obesity. With obesity affecting more than one third of all adults in the U.S., this has become an increasingly prevalent issue in the healthcare industry. Now, a new study conducted by researchers at UC Berkeley’s Safe Transportation and Research Education Center has found that obesity can dramatically increase the risk of traffic fatalities as well.

The study found that obese drivers are nearly 80 percent more likely to die in a car accident than drivers with healthy weights. The researchers behind the study attributed their findings to the fact that safety features such as seatbelts and airbags are ill-equipped to protect overweight drivers in the event of an accident. An overweight driver’s added abdominal mass can prevent seatbelts from fitting properly, and propel their body further forward in collisions. These two factors can make car accidents especially dangerous for obese adults.

In their conclusions, the research team noted that “it may be the case that passenger vehicles are well designed to protect normal-weight vehicles occupants but are deficient in protecting overweight or obese occupants.” Interestingly enough, the study also found that underweight male drivers were more likely to die in car accidents than men of average weights.

At 4N6XPRT Systems, our powerful accident reconstruction software has been helping accident victims, attorneys and law enforcement agencies to establish fault in accidents for more than 20 years. If you or your client has been involved in an accident, a software program like 4N6XPRT StifCalcs can help to generate a more complete picture of the mechanics of the collision. Contact us today to learn more.

Written by Staff


Daniel W. Vomhof Ph.D. is the President and one of the original program developers for 4N6XPRT Systems. The product known as the 4N6XPRT BioMeknx® program was written by him and incorporates well over 10 feet of book shelf space as well as multiple hundreds of hours of internet searches for information SPECIFIC to the human body and the questions that come up in litigation regarding it, such as – strength of bone, walking speed, and vision cones.

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