Development of a Test Procedure for FMVSS 223 - Rear Impact Guards 1999-01-0435
This paper presents the resultf a project concerning the development of a test procedure for evaluating rear impact guards installed on trailers. The procedure was based on requirements established in Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 223, Rear Impact Guards. Rear impact guards are required on trailers to prevent passenger vehicles from driving underneath the rear of a trailer, commonly referred to as underride. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) estimates that 11,551 rear-end crashes with trucks, trailers, and semi-trailers occur annually. These crashes result in approximately 423 passenger vehicle occupant fatalities and 5030 nonfatal injuries. The nonfatal injuries include lacerations to the head and neck area, severe brain trauma, and internal hemorrhaging.
The objective of the test procedure was to present uniform formats for testing and data recording, and provide suggestions for the use of specific equipment. Tests similar to FMVSS 223, such as FMVSS 207, Seating Systems, FMVSS 210, Seat Belt Assembly Anchorages, and FMVSS 214 (Static), Side Impact Protection were evaluated for methods that may be suitable for the new test procedure. Based on the results of this development project, the procedure was adopted by the NHTSA for performing compliance tests.