Researchers working on a study published earlier this year by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) discovered that women motorists have a higher injury and fatality risk than their male counterparts — but probably not for any reason that you might think.
The IIHS researchers pointed to the nature of a crash and the vehicle type when explaining why women tend to experience more adverse outcomes than men in motor vehicle accidents. This knowledge may prove invaluable to you as you look to employ crash avoidance tactics.
Women tend to drive smaller vehicles
Women tend to operate smaller cars than their male counterparts. The IIHS researchers discovered that is likely at least one reason why women tend to end up with far worse injuries than men when accidents do occur. IIHS researchers determined that 70% of women’s crashes occur in smaller vehicles, whereas 5% of them happen in larger vehicles, such as pickup trucks. When men are in wrecks, only 60% are likely to be in a smaller vehicle and 20% are likely to be in pickups.
Smaller vehicles offer less physical protection in a wreck
One reason that women tend to suffer more debilitating or life-threatening injuries in a crash has to do with how poorly smaller vehicles absorb the impact of a crash. Usually, the way it works is that the larger the vehicle, the better a vehicle’s frame is about absorbing an accident’s impact. This, in turn, may leave individuals riding in pickups or sport utility vehicles more apt to go unscathed in a wreck — especially in comparison to a compact car.
Women are more likely to be on the “receiving” end of the wreck
Another reason why the researchers believe female motorists are more apt to suffer injuries in a crash than men is that males are more commonly the “striker” (the one causing the accident) than women. As such, their vehicles usually take the most damage.
Knowing this information may influence you the next time you buy a car — if only in the interest of safety. If you’ve are injured in a serious car accident, learn more about your potential right to compensation for your losses.