'Overweight' crash test dummies being developed in response to U.S. obesity trends

One company is taking note of America's obesity issue by manufacturing "overweight" crash test dummies.

Humanetics is a Plymouth, Michigan-based company that has been developing crash test dummies since the 1950s. But the image and model of a crash test dummy hasn't changed much throughout those decades, so now Humanetics is developing a heftier crash test dummy to better represent growing obesity trends in the U.S.

"Obese people are 78 percent more likely to die in a crash," Humanetics CEO Chris O' Connor told CNN. "The reason is the way we get fat. We get fat in our middle range. And we get out of position in a typical seat."

Humanetics' obese dummy will weigh in at 273 pounds with a body mass index of 35. The National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute classifies obesity as those with a body mass index of 30. According to the CDC, over one-third of Americans are obese.