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									research
ISSUE: 06/10
                                         n e w s




Buckle up
      in   pregnancy
to protect you & your baby


INSIDE: CLICK HERE TO GO TO:
Cover article P2 Group rating - Did you know?   P12
Vehicle Security Steering Group - Plant P16
BUCKLE UP IN PREGNANCY TO
PROTECT YOU AND YOUR BABY




                                                                   “Wearing a seat belt reduces the injury
                                                                    risk to the unborn baby by up to 70%”.




                               ‘Buckle up’
                             in pregnancy
                            Pregnancy changes the body    In 2008, there were 709,000               fetus or fetal death can occur with
                            in many different ways, and   babies born in England and Wales.         only minor injuries to the mother.
                            can cause problems with car   All of these pregnant women are           National and international research
                            travel, both in terms of      likely to be either drivers themselves,   studies have shown that the
                            safety and comfort. Whilst    or regularly travel as a passenger        pregnant woman and her fetus are
                                                          in a car. Most women that have            at increased risk during a collision
                            pregnancy is a temporary
                                                          experienced pregnancy will have           if the seat belt is not worn. Wearing
                            condition, these problems     some problem or discomfort to report      a seat belt reduces injury risk to the
                            can severely affect women     regarding car travel in pregnancy.        fetus by up to 70%. Research has
                            and their fetuses.                                                      also shown that if only the lap belt
                                                          The main causes of fetal death are        is used, or if it is incorrectly
                                                          placental abruption (where the            positioned (either over the abdomen
                                                          placenta is detached from the uterus)     or thighs), then the risk of injury
                                                          and uterine rupture. Injuries to the      is increased.
 BUCKLE UP IN PREGNANCY TO



                                                                                      n   e   w   s
 PROTECT YOU AND YOUR BABY




“The correct position for the seat belt
in pregnancy is with the shoulder section
passing across the shoulder, between the
breasts, and around the abdomen, and
the lap section passing across the hips
and underneath the abdomen.”
Correct seat belt positioning             positioned. Overall, 93% of the
The correct position for the seat         pregnant women were using the
belt in pregnancy is with the             seat belt. From those women who
shoulder section passing across           admitted they were not using their
the shoulder, between the breasts,        seat belt, only 14% said it was
and around the abdomen, and the           because they do not usually wear
lap section passing across the hips       it, and the rest had ceased using
and underneath the abdomen. This          their seat belt due to pregnancy.
seat belt position is recommended
by many authorities, including the        There were two reasons given
UK Department for Transport, the          by the pregnant women for why
American College of Obstetrics            they had chosen to stop wearing
and Gynaecology and the National          the seat belt. 37% had stopped
Highway Traffic Safety Administration     because they believed it was
in the USA.                               a safety risk, and nearly half the
                                          women had stopped due to
The guidelines from the UK                discomfort.
Department for Transport can
be found at www.dft.gov.uk/               From those women who were
think_media/241045/241136/                wearing their seat belt, the survey
buckleup.pdf                              revealed that only 11% of them
                                          had their seat belt positioned
Women are required by law to wear         correctly. This means nearly 90%
their seat belt in pregnancy, even        of the pregnant women had the
if it is uncomfortable. Some women        seat belt positioned incorrectly,
are worried that wearing a seat belt      and this is due to two main
could harm the fetus. However in          reasons. One reason is that
the event of a crash the seat belt will   they were unaware of the correct
actually help to protect the pregnant     positioning. Another reason given
woman and her unborn baby. Anyone         by many pregnant women was
who does not wear a seat belt could       that the belt would not stay fitted
injure other people in the car during     around the pregnant body correctly,
a crash, including the fetus and any      although they did understand how
other children.                           the seat belt should be correctly
                                          positioned.
Loughborough University has carried
out a survey of 600 pregnant women        Right: Correct seat belt positioning
to investigate how often the seat belt    The correct position for the seat belt
                                          in pregnancy is with the shoulder section
is used, and whether it is correctly      passing across the shoulder, between the
                                          breasts, and around the abdomen, and the
                                          lap section passing across the hips and
                                          underneath the abdomen
BUCKLE UP IN PREGNANCY TO
PROTECT YOU AND YOUR BABY



                            Not wearing a seat belt
                            is illegal and can put the
                            unborn baby at increased
                            risk of injury in a crash




                                                         Thatcham has been carrying out         This is based on the hypothesis
                                                         research into seat belt positioning    that the uterine pressure could
                                                         for pregnant women in collaboration    be related to placental abruption.
                                                         with Loughborough University.          Placental abruption has been
                                                         Using a specially converted test       shown in the research to be the
                                                         dummy, sled testing at Thatcham        primary cause of fetal loss. Peak
                                                         has confirmed the importance           intra-abdominal pressures are
                                                         of using the correct seat belt         related to both the peak force
                                                         position. The dummy used was           applied to the abdomen and the
                                                         a Hybrid III 5th percentile female,    peak accelerations of the abdomen,
                                                         which represents a woman with          and have been suggested
                                                         small stature. However, the dummy      as potential predictors of injury.
                                                         was converted using a MAMA2B
                                                         kit to represent pregnancy. The        The sled tests carried out were
                                                         conversion represents the 30th         at 30 mph, and represented
                                                         week of pregnancy, which is the        a frontal impact. The tests
                                                         third trimester. The MAMA2B            compared the lap belt positioned
                                                         conversion includes a replacement      correctly across the hips, against
                                                         pelvis and lower spine. The pregnant   the lap belt positioned incorrectly
                                                         abdomen assembly uses a fluid-filled   over the abdomen. It was clear
                                                         silicone rubber bladder to represent   that having the lap belt positioned
                                                         the uterus. A pressure sensor          across the abdomen appears
                                                         is mounted at the front point of the   to give a much higher pressure
                                                         uterus to measure the pressure         than with it positioned across
                                                         response of the fluid-filled uterus.   the hips.



                                                         “Placental abruption has been shown in the
                                                         research to be the primary cause of fetal loss”.




                                                                                                                                      Sled testing showed that correct lap
                                                                                                                                      belt positioning across the hips reduces
                                                                                                                                      the pressure in the abdomen compared
                                                                                                                                      to incorrect lap belt positioning over the
                                                                                                                                      abdomen
 BUCKLE UP IN PREGNANCY TO



                                                                                                                                                          n             e           w   s
 PROTECT YOU AND YOUR BABY

Incorrect seat belt positioning
There are many possibilities for the position of a seat belt, and it is important to take care to achieve the correct
position. It is possible to position either the shoulder section or the lap section incorrectly, and even to have both
parts incorrectly positioned. The shoulder belt is incorrectly positioned if it is passing over/above the breasts, off
the shoulder, across the abdomen, or is not worn at all. The lap belt is incorrectly positioned if it passes over the
abdomen, across the thighs, or is not worn at all.

“The lap belt is incorrectly positioned if it passes over the abdomen,
across the thighs, or is not worn at all”.
Incorrect shoulder belt positioning                                                                                      Incorrect lap belt positioning




  Incorrect shoulder belt:                                          Incorrect shoulder belt:                               Incorrect lap belt:                Incorrect lap belt:
  over/above the breasts                                            off the shoulder                                       high over abdomen                  over abdomen




  Incorrect shoulder belt:                                          Incorrect shoulder belt:                               Incorrect lap belt:                Incorrect lap belt:
  across abdomen                                                    not worn                                               across thighs                      not worn
 BUCKLE UP IN PREGNANCY TO
 PROTECT YOU AND YOUR BABY




“Rear facing child seats are the best protection for small babies and
children. However they should never be used in the front of a car with
airbags unless they’re deactivated”.
Take time for adjustments                 abdomen and the steering wheel.                If the seat has to be moved further
As pregnant women change size             10% of the women said they were                rearward, then the view out of the
and shape, it is important to allow       driving with their abdomen less                mirrors will also be altered. It is
time for making adjustments to            than 3cm from the steering wheel               important to always check the
the car seat belt and seat in order       or nearly touching.                            view in the mirrors when the seat
to increase comfort and reduce                                                           and steering wheel positions are
possible distractions. Not only is        Pregnant women are therefore                   adjusted. Pregnant women should
it important to adjust the seat belt      advised to sit with as great a                 also ensure they can still reach
to the correct position, but also         distance as possible between their             the clutch, brake and accelerator
to allow time for adjusting the seat      abdomen and steering wheel to                  pedals properly without stretching
position if necessary.                    reduce the risk of injury in a crash.          – this is important to ensure that
                                                                                         reaction times are not affected.
A particular problem is that the
enlarged abdomen grows closer
to the steering wheel. For some
pregnant women, this can mean
that they are even driving with their
bump in contact with the wheel.
Current DfT guidelines recommend
that the distance between the
centre of the steering wheel to
the breast-bone should be at least
                                                                                                                                                                                    A child correctly fitted into a child seat
25cm (10 inches), although this
advice is not specific to pregnant
women. The National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration in                                                                                               Child seats                              airbags are deactivated. Older,                  Overall, the importance of using
the USA advises pregnant women                                                                                                 Once the baby is born, it will           bigger children need different types             the seat belt in pregnancy and
to sit as far back as possible from                                                                                            need a proper child seat. A baby         of child seats, and there is more                having it correctly positioned has
the steering wheel or dashboard                                                                                                or child should never be carried         information about all types of child             been highlighted in this testing
and recommends a distance                                                                                                      on someone’s lap, since there            seats at www.dft.gov.uk/think_                   by Thatcham. The correct position
between the breastbone and the                                                                                                 is a risk of crushing the child          media/241015/241057/251.pdf                      for the seat belt in pregnancy
steering wheel or dashboard to be                                                                                              in a crash. A well fitted child seat                                                      is passing across the shoulder
at least 25cm in order to reduce the                                                                                           is essential, as well as being a legal   Thatcham will soon be publishing                 and breastbone around the bump,
possibility of injury from an inflating                                                                                        requirement for children under three     an article in Research News that                 with the lap section passing
airbag in an accident. The survey                                                                                              years old. Rear facing child seats       is specifically about child seats.               across the hips and underneath
by Loughborough University has                                                                                                 are the best protection for small                                                         the abdomen. Thatcham will
revealed that only 14% of pregnant                                                                                             babies and children. However, they                                                        continue to research the issues
women in the sample were seated                                                                                                should never be used in the front                                                         of safety for pregnant women
with 25cm or greater between their                                                                                             of a car with airbags unless the                                                          and for children.
                                            Some pregnant women have to sit with the bump very close to the steering wheel




                                                                                                                                                    AUTHOR: Dr. Alix Weekes, Lead Research Engineer, Thatcham
 GROUP RATING – DID YOU KNOW?




                                                                                                                                            ?
Group                                                                                                   Did
                                                                                                      you
rating                                                                                                 know
The most important                      final group rating on a minority
development since the                   of cars.
introduction of the new
50 group rating system                  The additional factors are known
in January 2007, has been               as “modifiers”. A list of the most
                                        common modifiers has been
the release of the formula
                                        provided to vehicle manufacturers
to vehicle manufacturers                to help them understand the
in 2009.                                thought process that goes into
                                        the final group allocation. The
This was brought about following        following represents the most
a request from the vehicle              common modifiers and includes
manufacturers through their trade       a short explanation of why these
body the SMMT (The Society of           are considered to be risk
Motor Manufacturers and Traders         characteristics:
Limited), to the ABI (Association
of British Insurers), who consulted
                                        Vehicle Impact Estimate
its members before releasing the
                                        – D&R (Damageability
formula. The formula allows a vehicle
manufacturer to take the factors        & Repairability)
of group rating into consideration      For each new model type, a repair                        Construction of the Vehicle                Limited Repair Outlets
when designing a new car, which         estimate is carried out following                        In the vast majority of D&R impacts,       This is usually a consideration
is particularly important in relation   a standard 15 Km/h impact to the                         there will be no structural damage.        when a vehicle is launched with
to low speed collision protection       front and rear of the car. In the                        However, in the real world there           a complex construction that
                                                                                     mposition




and vehicle security. However, the      UK, this is carried out to the                           will be many damage scenarios,             may require specialist equipment
formula is, and always has been,        offside front and nearside rear.                         including structural that an insurer       for repairs. The increase in risk
a guide used by the Group Rating        However, as the majority of cars                         will have to pay for. Therefore, the       is the cost that can be incurred
                                                                                  ructural co




Panel (a panel of 12 insurers) to       are built in countries that drive                        group rating may consider a car            in transporting vehicles to an
establish the risk of new vehicles,     on the opposite side to the UK,                          that has a complex construction            approved repairer or the delays
                                        the manufacturers often impact                           or a mix of materials to be a higher       in getting the repair completed.
                                                                               Complex st




and distinguishes one from another
based on risk characteristics. The      the nearside front and nearside                          risk, as these will cost more to repair.
formula cannot possibly cater for       rear for other European countries.                       An example of this would be a car
every risk characteristic that a car    Thatcham will then adjust the                            that has a mix of steel and aluminium
represents to an insurer, and           damage estimate to take into                             body panels/structure or one with
therefore additional factors may        account other components that                            a high proportion of ultra high
be considered when allocating the       sit in the offside of the engine bay                     strength steels.
                                        that are vulnerable to damage.
 GROUP RATING – DID YOU KNOW?




Cabriolet models                        of cars on the market today, but
In this instance, we have two           for new manufacturers entering                                                                                                  “Cabriolet models...
possibilities: those models with a      the market, it is a consideration
                                        that they will be made aware of.
                                                                                                                                                                        These models attract
soft top cabriolet cover or the hard
top convertibles more commonly                                                                                                                                          standard increases,
known as coupe/cabriolets (CC).         High Risk Vehicles                                                                                                              a 1 group increase for
The increase in risk is firstly that    Several types of vehicle may fit
the roof can be left down when the      into this category because the                                                                                                  the CC versions and
vehicle is left unattended, therefore   formula does not adequately reflect                                                                                             a 2 group increase for
increasing the risk of theft from.      the potential risk. The first of these
Secondly and more likely is the risk    would be those commonly known                                                                                                   soft top versions.”
of damage to the soft top through       as “Hot Hatch” variants that exist        Peugeot 308CC             Peugeot 308 CC
vandalism. These models attract         within a range, which are known
standard increases, a 1 group           to have a higher claims frequency
increase for the CC versions and        and average repair cost and
a 2 group increase for soft top         therefore attract an increased rating.
versions.                               Another example would be multi
                                        passenger vehicles that have more
Panoramic Windscreens                   than 5 seats – the potential risk
Although the price of the front         is for higher personal injury claims,
screen is taken into account within     so if the initial group is felt to be
the formula, there is no weighting      too low to reflect the increased risk,
applied to reflect the frequency        then this may be increased.
with which screens are replaced.
Therefore, where a very expensive       These examples of modifiers are                                                                                                    Ford Focus standard
windscreen is fitted, which is          by no means exhaustive, as there
usually because it incorporates         could be a new technology just
some expensive technology or            around the corner that influences
is a “panoramic” screen, the risk       the risk. Thatcham is well positioned     New Citroën C3 Panorama
is deemed to be higher than             to advise the Group Rating Panel
reflected in the formula and the        on any new technologies and
group rating may be increased.          construction techniques and their
                                        potential to increase or reduce risk,
Parts Availability                      having often researched these as         “Panoramic screens...
The availability of parts is a key      they emerge.                             the risk is deemed to
component to ensuring that
damaged cars are repaired and           For further information on the           be higher than reflected
back with the customer as quickly       group rating formula and the             in the formula and the
                                        group ratings allocated, please
as possible, thereby keeping the
customer happy and reducing the         visit www.thatcham.org and               group rating may be
time spent in hire cars etc. This       go to Insurance Group Rating.            increased.”
does not affect the vast majority                                                                           New Citroën C3 Panorama                                        Ford Focus RS ‘hot hatch’




                                                                                                                               AUTHOR: HOWARD BARRON, Group Rating Manager, Thatcham
 PLANT UPDATE



u p d a t e


Vehicle Security Steering                 The VSSG-P was instrumental in the         Discounts are available for
Group – Plant (VSSG-P)                    drafting of the following Thatcham       Agricultural and Construction
Membership of the VSSG-P is open          Criteria:                              Plant fitted with:
to all insurance companies who are
                                          •   The British Insurance Industry’s   •   Construction Equipment
Thatcham stakeholders and hold an
                                              Criteria for Agricultural and          Security And Registration
extensive portfolio of agricultural and
                                              Construction Plant                     (CESAR) only
construction plant.
                                                                                 •   Thatcham approved Plant2
The role of the VSSG-P is to monitor,     •   Thatcham 5 Star Rating for             (P2) immobiliser only
guide and support those activities            Agricultural and Construction
of Thatcham’s Vehicle Security                Plant                              •   Thatcham approved Plant5
Department concerned with the theft                                                  (P5) tracking system only
of agricultural and construction plant    Following on from the launch of        •   CESAR plus an approved (P2)
equipment and to facilitate               the Thatcham 5 Star Rating in July         immobiliser
the identification and eradication        2009, the member companies of the
of insurance risks/losses caused          VSSG-P now offer generous security     •   CESAR plus an approved (P5)
by the activities of serious and          discount for the fitment of approved       tracking system
organised crime.                          security devices.
                                                                                 •   CESAR plus an Thatcham
                                                                                     approved (P2) immobiliser and
                                                                                     approved (P5) tracking system
 PLANT UPDATE


British Machine Industry                The function of the BMIA is to work      For more information on the activities                                                    Agricultural and
Association (BMIA)                      with, and provide funds for, the Plant   of PANIU visit: www.cesarscheme.                                                          Construction Plant
The increasingly high level of          and Agricultural National Intelligence   org/Downloads/paniu_2009-10_                                                              Manufacturers
insurance losses suffered as a result   Unit (PANIU), a police unit dedicated    report.pdf
of the activities of highly organised   exclusively to the detection and
                                                                                                                                                                           Thatcham is working with
professional criminal gangs targeting   disruption of serious and organised      Plant Theft                                                                               manufacturers to develop
agricultural and construction plant,    criminals targeting agricultural and     Despite the improvements in security
                                                                                                                                                                           and improve the level
coupled with a very low recovery        construction plant.                      on new agricultural and construction
                                                                                                                                                                           of standard fit security on
arrest rate, led to the formation                                                plant and the inroads that PANIU
of the BMIA.                                                                     is making into organised crime,                                                           a wide range of machines
                                        Plant and Agricultural
                                                                                 there is still a lot of unprotected                                                       to achieve the recommended
                                        National Intelligence Unit
                                                                                 and vulnerable plant at risk of theft.                                                    minimum insurance standard
                                        (PANIU)
                                        PANIU is a specialist police unit that   The top 20 high risk machines are:                                                        of three stars.
                                        is totally funded by the construction
                                        and agricultural insurance industries    1)   JCB Telehandlers                                                                     Finning Caterpillar are close
                                        and from funding directly from the                                                                                                 to completing the New Vehicle
                                                                                 2)   JCB Backhoe Excavators                                                               Security Assessment for Plant
                                        Construction Equipment Security
                                        and Registration Scheme (CESAR).         3)   JCB Mini Excavators                                                                  for their excavator range 319D
                                        It is based in London and is part of                                                                                               to 385D series and hope to achieve
                                                                                 4)   Takeuchi Mini Excavators                                                             a three star rating in the near future.
                                        the Specialist Crime Directorate at
                                        New Scotland Yard.                       5)   Benford/Terex Dumpers
                                                                                                                                                                           To date, a total of 19 manufacturers
                                        Since its inception in October 2008,     6)   Kubota Mini Excavators                                                               have achieved one, two or three star
                                        plant theft recoveries have increased                                                                                              ratings on a total of 507 machines
                                                                                 7)   John Deere Tractors                                                                  and machine variants.
                                        from 5% to almost 42% with
                                        numerous arrests and successful          8)   Bomag Rollers
                                        prosecutions.                                                                                                                      For more information on the 5 Star
                                                                                 9)   Massey Ferguson Tractors                                                             rating, see Thatcham web page:
                                                                                                                                                                           www.thatcham.org/nvsr
                                                                                 10) Thwaites Dumpers
                                                                                 11) Volvo Mini Excavators
                                                                                 12) New Holland Tractors
                                                                                 13) Manitou Telehandlers
                                                                                 14) Hitachi Mini Excavators
                                                                                 15) Caterpillar Mini Excavators
                                                                                 16) Genset Generators
                                                                                 17) John Deere Ride On Mowers
                                                                                 18) Bob Cat Mini Excavators
                                                                                 19) Caterpillar Telehandlers
                                                                                 20) Case Tractors                                                                           Agricultural




                                                                                                                                                                             Plant


                                                                                                                          AUTHOR: MARTYN RANDLE, Senior Engineer Vehicle Security, Thatcham
research                        n e w s
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