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Car accident statistics for pregnant women show increased danger

Any Wisconsin resident who has gone through a pregnancy is aware of the enormous physical and emotional changes that occur inside the body. Recently, a group of researchers decided to look into how those changes could affect car accident risk. The researchers were especially curious to look at second trimester car accident statistics as compared to other trimesters. Researchers were concerned that because pregnant women tend to feel fairly normal in the second trimester, they may be throwing caution to the wind and not considering the changes in their body while operating a motor vehicle.

According to the researchers, their suspicions were correct. Women in the second trimester of a pregnancy have as much as a 42 percent higher chance of getting into a car accident than people who are not pregnant. Interestingly, though, by the woman's third trimester she will have a lower chance of being in a car accident than individuals who are not pregnant, and she will continue to have a lower chance a full year after she gives birth to her baby.

Researchers suspect that the nausea and other physical transformations can affect a woman's driving ability during the second trimester. Also, the fact that she may not notice they are occurring would result in her not taking more care while driving. They suspect that by the third trimester, the woman is feeling the changes in her body intensely and is driving more carefully as a result. Nevertheless, researchers conclude that a young pregnant female (even with her 42 percent heightened chance of being in a crash) is still less likely to get into an accident than her young male husband since young men have higher crash statistics than young women across the board.

Wisconsin drivers, male and female, pregnant and not pregnant alike, do tend to drive responsibly in order to avoid being in a car accident. However, some are not so responsible and when those unlawful and/or negligent vehicle operators cause an injurious collision, restitution for the cost of resulting medical care may be pursuable. Restitution for pain and suffering, temporary and permanent disability, legal fees and other costs may also be recoverable in such cases.

Source: The Clarion-Ledger, "Study: Driving while pregnant risky" No author given, May. 13, 2014

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