Influence of Vehicle Body Type on Pedestrian Injury Distribution 2005-01-1876
Pedestrian impact protection has been a growing area of research over the past twenty or more years. The results from many studies have shown the importance of providing protection to vulnerable road users as a means of reducing roadway fatalities. Most of this research has focused on the vehicle fleet as a whole in datasets that are dominated by passenger cars (cars). Historically, the influence of vehicle body type on injury distribution patterns for pedestrians has not been a primary research focus. In this study we used the Pedestrian Crash Data Study (PCDS) database of detailed pedestrian crash investigations to identify how injury patterns differ for pedestrians struck by light trucks, vans, and sport utility vehicles (LTVs) from those struck by cars. AIS 2+ and 3+ injuries for each segment of vehicles were mapped back to both the body region of the pedestrian injured and the vehicle source linked to that injury in the PCDS database. The findings indicate that the head is the most frequently injured body region for both vehicle segments, but the lower extremity is second for cars, whereas the torso is second for LTVs. Mapping the injuries back to the vehicles we find that the most frequent sources of injury for cars are the windshield and bumper, while for the LTVs it is the hood and hood leading edge.