Real-world car accident reconstruction methods for crash avoidance system research
Development of crash avoidance systems and active safety systems must not be only based on experimental knowledge. The goal is to provide an efficient answer to still unsolved severe real-world car crashes which occur despite enhanced passive safety devices. This requires to know precisely the pre-crash conditions during about 3 to 10 seconds before impact. The paper describes the multidisciplinary systemic approach leading to the comprehensive methodology used in accident reconstruction in order to determine the best scenario, and to assess initial car speeds, paths and events in the different phases of the accident. This has already been carried out for about 400 car crashes with car occupant injuries (including 6% fatal and 10% severely injured). The necessity of collecting data on the spot of the crash scene is highlighted. Three well-trained investigators are involved.