Kris Allen, from American Idol, broke his arm in a recent car accident. To make matters even worse, his pregnant wife and his dog were injured in the New Year’s Day accident, too! According to Fox Carolina, the expectant mother and her unborn child had to undergo surgery because of the collision.
Our Charlotte car accident attorneys understand how dangerous it can be for an expectant mother to be involved in a traffic crash. Unfortunately, states are not required by the federal government to record fetal deaths when reporting traffic accident fatalities. Officials estimate that there are somewhere between 300 and 1,000 unborn children who are killed in car accidents each year. As a matter of fact, the rate of car accident fatalities among unborn children is about five times greater than the rate for children under the age of 4.
Why are pregnant women at special risks during a car accident?
What’s most at risk of occuring in these kinds of accidents is the placenta uterine attachment. That’s the very fragile attachment and it doesn’t take a lot to break. When this happens, the unborn child loses oxygen supply. This incident accounts for about 80 percent of the losses in unborn children in car accidents. After that, the biggest threat is the steering wheel. A pregnant belly typically sits closer to the steering. When the wheel hits the abdomen — serious injuries and fatalities occur.
Special instructions for pregnant vehicle occupants?
When it all boils down, the three-point seat belt is the best for everyone. The only problem when it comes to pregnant women is that there’s a lot of misinformation and misuse. A lot of pregnant women simply don’t like how these belts fit. It’s important that the seat belt lies on the pelvis and not over your belly. When seated properly, the airbags are going to help, too!
Advice for pregnant passengers?
The most important thing that you want to do is make sure the seat belt is positioned properly. Make sure the lap portion of the belt is by your legs and the steering wheel is as far from your tummy as you can make it. On some vehicles, you can even adjust the heights of the gas and brake pedal so you don’t have to sit so close to the wheel. You can also look into aftermarket pedal extenders to keep your distance.
If you’re pregnant and you’ve been in an accident the first thing you want to do is visit with a healthcare specialist. You may not feel or see that anything is wrong, but sometimes there are undetectable conditions that can cause some serious problems. Remember that it’s even possible for a pregnant woman’s fetus to be injured in an accident where no physical contact is made. A quick stopping motion can expose a mother and her fetus to a type of injury known as a contra-coup injury.
If you, your child or someone you love has been injured or killed in a car accident, contact the Lee Law Offices, P.A. for a free and confidential consultation. Call 1-800-887-1965 to speak with an accident lawyer today.
More Blog Entries:
Carolina Traffic Safety: Single Vehicle Crashes Can Be Dangerous Too, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, January 6, 2013
New Technology Aims to Stop Drunk Drivers Before Accidents Can Happen, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, January 4, 2013