Pregnant Women Should Buckle Up, NHTSA Says
When you are carrying a child and as your abdomen grows, wearing a seatbelt (or anything else for that matter) can feel constricting and uncomfortable. But the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says this shouldn’t stop you from buckling up. By wearing your seatbelt, you are protecting not only yourself in the event of an accident, you are protecting your unborn child as well.
As reported by the NY Daily News, pregnant women involved in car accidents put their unborn children at risk for injury as well. The more severe your auto accident injuries are, the more serious the risk to your child is. In the most extreme cases, you could miscarry as a result of a bad accident.
Wearing a seatbelt protects both of you when an accident occurs. In an effort to encourage moms-to-be to buckle up, the NHTSA issued a safety bulletin with details on how to keep pregnant women safe in vehicles.
They say there is no doubt that wearing a seatbelt can protect a pregnant woman and her child, but simple adjustments like moving the seat back should be made to maximize protection.
They recommend moving the seat back as far as possible, keeping at least 10 inches between your chest and the steering wheel or dashboard if you are a passenger. Of course, this will have to be adjusted as your belly grows, maintaining a distance throughout the pregnancy.
The NHTSA also cautions that airbags are not designed to take the place of seat belts, but to be used with them. They caution against turning off your air bags. The best protection comes when the airbag is fully functioning and you are wearing your seatbelt.
There are more than 170,000 auto accidents involving pregnant women each year. And car accidents are the leading cause of death for unborn children. So, while it may be very important to change your dietary habits while pregnant, it’s just as important to protect yourself while in a car.
Wearing your seatbelt and maintaining distance between yourself and the dashboard are just two ways to maximize safety. Always practice safe driving and be aware of your surroundings. Even the best drivers can be involved in serious auto accidents.
If you are involved in a car accident, the Pennsylvania car accident attorneys at Munley Law Personal Injury Attorneys are here to help. Contact our offices today to discuss your case.
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Posted in Car Accidents.