Buckling up for safety is always important when riding in a vehicle, but even more so for pregnant women to protect not only themselves but also their unborn child. If you are pregnant, you may wonder whether it’s safe to wear a seatbelt and may be concerned about that effect of a seatbelt on the baby in a car accident. Wearing a seatbelt while pregnant is not only safe, it is advised. Some modifications, however, are recommended for pregnant women traveling in cars to ensure that the seat belt is functioning as intended and to provide maximum safety for a pregnant driver or passenger.
While pregnant, you should wear the shoulder belt away from your neck but not off your shoulder. The belt should cross your chest between your breasts and be pulled snug with no slack. The shoulder belt should never be placed behind your back or under an arm. The lap belt should cross under your belly and rest on your hips and pelvic bone, not directly across your abdomen. This avoids impact and trauma to the baby if you are involved in a car accident and the seatbelt tightens across your stomach.
When driving, you should adjust the seat in order to comfortably reach the pedals while also trying to maintain the maximum distance between your belly and the steering wheel. Avoid reclining the seat excessively to minimize a gap between the shoulder belt and the car seat. When riding as a passenger in a car, you should move the car seat back as far as possible to maximum the distance between your belly and the dash of the car and airbag.
Where possible, only travel in vehicles with airbags and do not disable the airbags. The proper use of seatbelts is even more important when traveling in a car with an airbag and the combination of the two safety features maximize protection for both you and your unborn child.
If you are involved in a car accident, even if it is minor, seek medical attention immediately. While you may feel fine, your baby may have suffered trauma in the crash and time is of the essence with these types of injuries.
If you or a loved one has been injured in a vehicle-related accident, you need knowledgeable and experienced lawyers on your side. The attorneys at Alexander Law Group, LLP will provide a free case evaluation to discuss your rights. With convenient office locations in San Jose and San Francisco, our team stands by ready to help. Contact us at 888.777.1776 or visit our website at www.alexanderlaw.com to find out more.