1997-02-24

Vehicle and Occupant Response in Heavy Truck to Car Low-Speed Rear Impacts 970120

Despite efforts by industry to reduce the problem of injury in rear impacts, there continues to be a large number of such claims. This is true even in low speed impacts which result in little or no damage to the vehicles involved. Recent studies of such incidents have been described in the literature. These studies have concentrated primarily on simple bumper to bumper impacts where the front bumper of the striking vehicle contacts the rear bumper of the struck vehicle.Perhaps a more common type of rear impact is one in which the bumper of the striking vehicle rides over or under the rear bumper of the struck vehicle. The heavy truck to car rear impact is an example of an overriding impact. This paper describes several staged impacts of this type in which vehicle and occupant responses were measured using fully instrumented Hybrid III dummies or human volunteers. These impacts often result in significantly greater damage than bumper to bumper impacts at identical speeds, while imparting lower accelerations and forces to the occupants of the struck vehicle.

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