New seatbelt harness could help pregnant women

13.56 | 6 April 2010 |

An inventor has developed a harness to counter the concerns pregnant women have about wearing a seat belt (BBC News).

Stephen Weston developed the idea after his wife would not wear a belt because she was concerned it could harm her unborn foetus in the event of a crash.

He said: "There are two problems with the ordinary seatbelt. One is the lap strap which people let ride up, and if you are in an impact it can hurt the foetus. The second is the diagonal strap where the same thing can occur.

"Guidelines put out by RoSPA and the police recommend putting the lap strap underneath the bump and the diagonal strap around the bump and between the breasts.

"But cars are all different shapes and sizes and so are pregnant ladies, and to try to get the seatbelt in the right position for everyone is nigh on impossible."

Mr Weston’s solution is a harness which takes pressure away from the abdomen.

He tested his idea by putting a trouser belt around his chest and the diagonal of the seatbelt behind him before hitting the brakes.

He said: "The new design moves the traditional diagonal strap away from the bump, and the force of the impact is actually taken on the shoulders and the chest, above the stomach.

Click here to read the full BBC News report.



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