SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Today's Why Guy looks at why women are more likely to suffer serious injuries in a car crash than men.
The situation is getting better. Safety improvements have lowered the risk of serious injury for both men and women. Men are involved in more fatal crashes, but a case-by-case study of car wrecks in the United States finds that it's women who were more likely to suffer serious injuries.
Here's why, a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety considered a decade's worth of serious car wrecks and found that women were three times more likely to suffer broken bones or a concussion in a front-end wreck, and twice as likely to suffer a traumatic brain injury. Physical differences between men and women may play a role but the study found vehicle choice to be a more prominent factor.
Jessica Jermakian is a spokesperson for the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
"Women tend to drive lighter, smaller vehicles, even in SUVs, women will drive the smaller, lighter ones," Jermakian said.
When it comes to side and rear-end crashes, women are often most likely to be driving the car that is struck and therefore at higher risk for serious injury.
The most significant discrepancy between men and women involved lower body injuries. The posture of the driver and even footwear are all contributing factors.
Safety officials add that it's worth more study as car manufacturers look at ways to improve safety further;
"We advise women to buy as much safety as they can afford," Jermakian said.
The message she shared is also that you don't have to buy a tank to get the best protection on the road. Find out more about how vehicle size and weight affects safety HERE.
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