1983-10-17

Experimental Study of a Compliant Bumper System 831623

An ordinary rigid bumper system and a compliant bumper system for pedestrian protection developed by the NHTSA, US Department of Transportation, were compared in an experimental study of leg injuries in car-pedestrian accidents.
Human leg specimens were struck in 20 experiments with a production car front using the two bumper types. Impacts were made with an ordinary front configuration with the bumpers at the 45 cm level and a 12.5 cm lower front configuration with the bumpers at the 32.5 cm level. The impact velocity was 30-32 km/h.
Serious leg injuries were noted with both front configurations and bumper types.
The compliant bumper seemed to cause less serious injuries than the rigid one, and the lower front configuration seemed to cause less serious injuries than the ordinary one. A lower bumper level than today's standard and a compliant bumper type is recommended in combination to reduce the risk of serious leg injuries in car-pedestrian accidents.

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