Pregnant drivers no exception to seat belt laws - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Pregnant drivers no exception to seat belt laws

(WMC-TV) - "Click it! Or ticket!" is the law in most states, and expectant mothers are no exception.

With more than 170,000 car crashes involving pregnant women every year in the United States, Ford Motor Company is launching a new effort to emphasize seat belt usage among moms-to-be.

Using a pregnancy suit, a Ford representative offered demonstrations Thursday in Memphis to make sure every expectant mother knows how to correctly buckle up.

Les Taylor of Dobbs Ford demonstrated the process, step by step.

"By instructing them on how to wear a seat belt as opposed to not wearing a seat belt, you save lives," he said.

According to Taylor a belly suit rather is much more effective than a crash dummy when providing more hands-on instruction about fetal crash safety.

"Now we can demonstrate to a mother or pregnant mother on how to wear a seat belt," he said. "It will be more comfortable and they'll get a little education to go along with it."

Ford recommends that expectant mothers:
 - Adjust the seat belt to fit your belly size, making sure the lap band fits securely underneath the baby.
 - Remove bulky clothes so the seat belt can be placed as close to the body as possible.
 - Adjust the seat so you can reach the pedals comfortably.
 - Never tuck the shoulder belt under your arm or behind your back, this could hurt both you and the baby.

With the pregnancy suit and these safety tips on board, Taylor said, Ford hopes pregnant moms will think twice about buckling up.

"(We hope to) prevent accidents and probably not get a ticket for not wearing a seat belt," he said.

Research shows that wearing a seatbelt is the most important thing you can do to protect yourself, and for expectant mothers, buckling up means protecting baby, too.

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