Traffic crashes during pregnancy can lead to cerebral palsy during infancy

A recent publication from ITMA's Regional Director in North America, Dr. Donald Redelmeier assessed the incidence of cerebral palsy among children born to mothers who had their pregnancy complicated by a motor vehicle crash through a retrospective longitudinal cohort analysis. Results highlight a specific role for traffic safety advice in in prenatal care. 

Click to see the full length paper: "Motor vehicle crashes during pregnancy and ceberal palsy during infancy: a longitudinal cohort analysis". 


ITMA Board Members Published Analysis of Traffic Deaths Before and After Birth

Using national datasets and applying plausible assumptions about rates of pregnancy and traffic fatalities, Evans and Redelmeier, the President Emeritus and North America Regional Director estimated the number of fetuses killed per year in traffic crashes in the USA. Two main assumptions were: (1) pregnant and non-pregnant women of the same age have equal chances of becoming traffic fatalities; (2) the death of a pregnant woman leads to the death of her unborn child. They computed that 227 pregnant women died in US traffic in 2012, implying also 227 fetus deaths. This contrasts with 60 babies aged less than one year killed in traffic crashes in 2012, equivalent to 45 deaths in the nine month period corresponding to pregnancy. Thus the risk of fetal death during pregnancy is 227/45 = 5.04 times the risk after birth for equal exposure times. This ratio likely underestimates the disparity because the risk of crashing increases during pregnancy, and the 5.04 ratio ignores the many cases in which the mother survives but the fetus does not.

Complete text at


Save The Date: ICTTP2016, The Sixth International Conference on Traffic & Transport Psychology

ICTTPICTTP2016: The Sixth International Conference on Traffic & Transport Psychology

2-5 August 2016, Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre, Queensland, Australia

Website: http://

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As the global population rises, economies become progressively motorized, and “the office” moves increasingly into fleet vehicles, providing safe and efficient transport systems is vital. Technology and engineering can provide part of the solution, but the complete answer can only come through understanding and guiding the behaviour of transport network users. 

The International Traffic and Medicine Association