(LiveScience) Driving without a seat-belt is a proven deadly hazard. And a new study finds obese drivers are much more likely to drive without buckling up.
The University at Buffalo study found that normal weight drivers are 67 percent more likely to wear a seat-belt than morbidly obese drivers. Drivers were considered overweight or obese if they had a BMI (body mass index) of 25 or more, according to the World Health Organization definition of obesity, with 25-30 defined as overweight, 30-35 slightly obese, 35-40 moderately obese and 40 morbidly obese.
"It's clear that not wearing a seat-belt is associated with a higher chance of death," says lead author Dietrich Jehle, MD, professor of emergency medicine at the UB School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and associate medical director at Erie County Medical Center. "We hypothesized that obese drivers were less likely to wear seat-belts than their normal weight counterparts. Obese drivers may find it more difficult to buckle up a standard seat-belt."
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