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Car Wreck Injuries of Men and Women Differ Significantly

Recent studies show women are much more likely than men to suffer serious injury when in a car crash.  It is not, however, due to physical differences between men and women, as you might think.  Instead, it is due to the types of cars women tend to drive and the circumstances of the collisions.  For example, women then to drive smaller, lighter cars, and are in wrecks that are side-impact or front-into-rear collisions more frequently than men. 

While women suffer more serious injuries, men are involved in more fatal crashes than women.  This is consistently true for every year from 1975.  The data shows from 1975-2021 men are about twice as likely than women to die in a car crash

The disparities between men and women’s injuries and death have spurred NHTSA, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, to address the issue that led to the inequalities.  One hypothesis is that crash test dummies do not adequately represent the average female body, so cares are not designed to protect them.  Instead, the dummies are 50th percentile male, i.e. a 171-pound, 5-foot 9-inch dummy.  Further research is needed to determine how to prevent the specific injuries women are more susceptible to, such as broken legs. 

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