Obese drivers involved in car crashes are more likely to die than drivers of normal weight, a new study says, and the results suggest car design might need to be rethought.
In a study published this week in the Emergency Medical Journal, researchers analyzed data collected from car crashes in the U.S. from 1996 to 2008, honing in on fatal crashes involving two passenger vehicles of a similar size and type.
Of the 3,403 pairs of drivers whose crashes were analyzed, 46% of the drivers were of normal weight, 33% were overweight and 18% were obese.
The more obese the driver was, the greater their risk of death, the research found. Drivers at level I obesity were 21% more likely to die, drivers at level II were 51% more likely to die, and drivers at level III were 80% more likely to die than drivers of normal weight.