As the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team won the World Cup for an unprecedented fourth time, fans and supporters renewed their calls for equal pay. But, as many of us know, it’s not just #MeToo and #EqualPay women have to worry about. In fact, a recent University of Virginia study revealed women face a much higher risk than men of being seriously injured or killed in a car crash. The UVA study was published in the journal Traffic Injury Prevention.
Researchers found females were 73% more likely than males to sustain a serious to fatal car accident injury, even after accounting for the fact that women tend to be smaller and sit closer to the steering wheel. Women are especially vulnerable to leg, spine, and abdominal injuries, with the odds of suffering these injuries at least twice that of males. While men are more likely than women to get into car wrecks, when a woman is involved in a crash, she is 17% more likely to die.
The Inequality of Crash Test Dummies
Historically, the lives of men have been taken to represent the overall human experience. As such, most vehicle safety tests are conducted using male crash test dummies. The standard crash test dummy is a 50th-percentile male representing the average U.S. soldier in the 1960s. This “guy” is also equipped with male muscle-mass proportions and a male spinal column. Designing safety systems to protect this “average male” is not representative of the types of people driving and riding in motor vehicles today. After years of requesting inclusion in crash dummy design, a female dummy was added in the early 2000s; however, she only represents a woman under five feet tall and 108 pounds, thus failing to consider and include 95% of women. The 2011 introduction of female crash-test dummies in the U.S. sent cars’ star ratings plummeting due to the lack of safety for women in the event of a car accident injury.
While more realistic crash test dummies are in the works, they’re expensive and not readily available, leaving road safety advocates without measurable data with which to make meaningful improvements for women. The situation is even worse for pregnant women. Although a pregnant crash-test dummy was created in 1996, neither the U.S. nor the E.U. mandates using it for auto safety testing.
Houston Fatal Car Accident Injury Lawyers
As Houston car crash lawyers, the attorneys of Dax F. Garza, P.C. look at every angle of a case, including whether or not a vehicle manufacturer failed to safely design its cars. If you or someone you know was injured in a motor vehicle accident, you need to find an experienced personal injury trial lawyer to help you navigate the complexities of civil litigation. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation, and confidential consultation to learn more about your situation.