Occupant protection in far-side crashes

Monash University Accident Research Centre - Report #294 [2010]

Editors: Brian Fildes and Kennerly Digges

Full report in .pdf format [6.7MB]

Abstract:

Side-impacts involving the far or non-struck-side occupants account for around 30% of side impact occupant Harm and there are no tests or regulations currently that address these crashes. With this in mind, the Monash University Accident Research Centre, in conjunction with a consortium of international research and automotive experts, initiated a collaborative research program to investigate a range of issues involving these crashes and injuries. The research objectives called for a more detailed understanding of far side crash environment, injuries and injury mechanisms, the development of suitable test procedures, computer models, test devices and injury criteria, evaluating the suitability of existing crash test dummies for use in this crash scenario, and to identify a range of generic far side injury countermeasures and estimate their potential safety benefits. The research program was structured into 7 Work Packages that addressed epidemiological, biomechanical, computer programs and the specification of test procedures and injury criteria. The final Work Package set out to identify a range of suitable generic countermeasures and where possible, the likely benefits of these in mitigating far side Harm. The extensive findings from this research are found in the various Chapters of the report. Overall, it shows that addressing far side occupant protection offers substantial improvements for reducing motor vehicle casualties internationally and the research findings provide the technical basis for evaluating and developing far-side countermeasures. Ultimately, minimum safety standards need to be adopted by governments and auto makers and a program of consumer information would help encourage far-side crash protection improvements.

Sponsoring organisations - Australian Research Council (Linkage Grant), George Washington University , Virginia , USA , GM_Holden, Australia , and Autoliv Research, Sweden