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Technical Paper

Biomechanical Tolerance of the Cranium

1994-09-01
941727
The objective of the study was to investigate the biomechanical response of the intact cranium. Unembalmed human cadavers were used in the study. The specimens were transected at the base of the skull leaving the intracranial contents intact; x-ray and computed tomography (CT) scans were obtained. They were fixed in a specially designed frame at the auditory meatus level and placed on the platform of an electrohydraulic testing device via a six-axis load cell. Following radiography, quasistatic loading to failure was applied to one of the following sites: frontal, vertex, parietal, temporal, or occipital. Retroreflective targets were placed in two mutually orthogonal planes to record the localized temporal kinematics. Applied load and piston displacement, and the output generalized force (and moment) histories were recorded using a modular digital data acquisition system. After the test, x-ray and CT images were obtained, and defleshing was done.
Technical Paper

Biomechanical Analysis of Tractor Induced Head Injury

1994-09-01
941726
Head injury is a serious threat to lives of people working around farm machinery. The consequence of head injuries are costly, paralytic, and often fatal. Clinical and biomechanical data on head injuries are reviewed and their application in the analysis of head injury risk associated with farm tractor discussed. A significant proportion of tractor-related injuries and deaths to adults, as well as children, is due directly or indirectly to head injury. An improved injury reporting program and biomechanical studies of human response to tractor rollover, runover, and falls, are needed to understand mechanisms of the associated head injury.
Technical Paper

Trauma to Children in Forward-Facing Car Seats

1993-11-01
933095
One of the leading causes of death and disability among young children is motor vehicle accidents. Although current child restraint systems (car seats) have significantly reduced mortality and morbidity, deaths and injuries still occur. Since it is not possible to correlate human child injury potential with the biomechanical devices used for high level impact testing using experimental methods, the acquisition and analysis of specific child injury data identifiable with real world automobile crashes is critical for input to biomechanical research, anthropometric test device (ATD) development and safety standard revisions. The purpose of this study was to analyze vehicular-related trauma that had occurred to children in known crash environments based on accident configuration and car seat design.
Technical Paper

Accident Investigation and Impairment Study of Lower Extremity Injury

1993-03-01
930096
The automotive safety community has grown increasingly aware of the societal costs of injury impairment and disability resulting from automobile accidents. A significant portion of this impairment can be attributed to lower extremity trauma. An accident data study was conducted to determine lower extremity injury frequencies and mechanisms for restrained front-seat occupants in frontal collisions. A query of the 1988-1990 NASS (National Accident Sampling System) data provided information on pelvis, femur, knee, leg, and ankle and foot injuries. Age, gender, seating position, and delta-V were examined for their effect on the data. Lower extremity injury data were compared with injury data of similar severity (AIS ≥ 2) for the head, chest, thorax, and abdomen. The NASS data was supplemented with injury impairment information which, combined with anthropomorphic and biomechanical data, provides a prioritization scheme for the design of dummy lower extremities and instrumentation.
Technical Paper

Adult Occupant Injuries of the Lower Limb

1986-10-01
861927
Lower limb injuries among motor vehicle occupants are relatively common and are one of the principle causes of permanent disability. The author has reviewed the current literature and his own experience as an orthopaedic surgeon and research accident investigator concerning lower limb injuries among motor vehicle occupants. An unreported series of knee, thigh, hip, pelvis injuries with indepth accident investigation is reported. Incidence rates for specific injury diagnoses are not available. Gross tabulations reveal that lower limb injury is second only to head injury in frequency among injured motor vehicle occupants. Lower limb injuries are possibly the commonest cause of permanent disability and impairment resulting from motor vehicle accidents.
Technical Paper

Evaluating Safety Regulations, Then and Now

1984-04-01
840907
The FMVSS were established to provide the public with uniform safety equipment and design standards based on sound research. Ongoing evaluation is essential to maintain the effectiveness and safety of FMVSS and to ensure that current technology is incorporated in standards development. Serious injury (AIS 3 or greater) reporting by NASS should be upgraded to facilitate standards evaluation and development. Although cost effectiveness is a mandated criteria for standards evaluation, the protection of human life and limb must remain the principle criteria for measuring effectiveness. A citizen's advisory panel, similar to the NMVSAC should be established to assist NHTSA in establishing priorities for standards evaluation, development and promulgation.
Technical Paper

Biomechanical Evaluation of Steering Wheel Design

1982-02-01
820478
In a crash, impact against the steering assembly can be a major cause of serious and fatal injury to drivers. But the interrelationship between injury protection and factors of surface area, configuration, padding, relative position of the spokes, and number and stiffness of spokes and rim is not clear. This paper reports a series of high-G sled tests conducted with anesthetized animal subjects in 30 mph impacts at 30 G peaks. A total of eight tests were conducted, five utilizing pig subjects, one a female chimpanzee, one an anthropomorphic dummy, and one test with no subject. Instrumentation included closed circuit TV, a tri-axial load cell mounted between the steering wheel and column, seat belt load measurement, six Photo-Sonics 1000 fps motion picture cameras, and poloroid photography. Medical monitoring pre, during and post-impact was followed by gross and microscopic tissue examination.
Technical Paper

Driver Body Size Considerations in Future U. S. Heavy Truck Interior Cab Design

1981-02-01
810218
Accurate data on the body dimensions of truck drivers are needed and such data are not presently available. This paper provides basic source data and an anthropometrical overview of the usefulness and limitations of existing data bases; discusses the influence of population factors, including age, sex, and demographic variables; and reviews population sampling problems. Heavy truck drivers as a whole appear to represent a physically different population from that of either the U.S. general population or other professional groups. Future anthropometric surveys must provide information for improved accommodation for the increasing range of physical size of users, and for obtaining data more useful to engineers involved in heavy truck interior cab design.
Technical Paper

Soft Tissue Injuries of the Neck

1979-02-01
790135
Whiplash is a poorly defined term including ligamentous and muscle strains, hematomas, disc injuries, and less frequently, brain, eye and ear injuries. Diagnosis is difficult because clinical signs and Xrays, electromyography and electroencephalography findings are few. Protection and rest will cure most patients within a year but approximately 2/5th of patients have permanent symptoms and disability. Rear-end impact accidents cause the head and neck to hyperextend over the seat back. Whiplash occurs in 38% of exposed occupants. Head rests give protection but differential rebound may occur producing injurious hyperextension and whiplash. The larynx, trachea and esophagus, in front of the spine, are injured by impact against the dash or steering wheel. Airway obstruction may occur and cause death if not restored quickly. Permanent disability can occur because of scarring and partial airway or esophageal obstruction or vocal cord damage.
Technical Paper

Crashworthiness Analysis of Field Investigation of Business Aircraft Accidents

1979-02-01
790587
Business and executive aviation represent a combined total of over 40% of the general aviation fleet, but (1977) accounted for only 8.37% of all general aviation accidents recorded. During the period 1964-1977 some 7,351 aircraft engaged in business flying, and 883 in corporate/executive operations, were involved in accidents reported by the NTSB. These accidents were reviewed utilizing the University of Michigan Computerized Accident Files to provide an overall view of the incidence and nature of business/executive aircraft accidents relative to occupant crash injuries. In addition more detailed case studies of selected accidents investigated including a Lear Jet 25B, Cessna 421, Beech Volpar Model 18, and Ted Smith Aerostar 601, are provided to illustrate specific types of crashworthiness, occupant protection, or post-crash emergency egress findings applicable to business/executive operations. Post-crash fire was reported in 29 cases (16.3%) during the 3-year period (1975-1977).
Technical Paper

Cervical Fractures and Fracture-Dislocations Sustained without Head Impact*

1979-02-01
790132
Because of its flexibility and structure, the cervical spine is disposed to various mechanisms of injury: although not so common as injuries caused by head impacts, cervical fractures and/or fracture-dislocations have been reported without direct impact to the head. Some cervical injuries reported have been sustained by wearers of lap and shoulder belts in auto accidents; however, we do not consider belt use a potential hazard because ample evidence has accrued in the medical and engineering literature to document general injury and fatality reduction by use of seatbelts. We believe that in many instances occupants would be more seriously injured or killed were belts not worn. The present paper reviews reports of cervical injuries without head impact found in the literature and case histories of such injuries from the Highway Safety Research Institute of The University of Michigan, as well as experimental studies in animals, cadavers, and volunteer subjects.
Technical Paper

Biomechanical Analysis of Swimming Pool Neck Injuries

1979-02-01
790137
This paper presents an analysis of 67 neck injuries incurred in diving and sliding accidents in swimming pools. The accidents were investigated to establish the appropriate medical and mechanical factors involved. A mathematical model was developed to allow the prediction of the trajectory and velocity of the subjects prior to their injury. Nine of the accidents were selected for real life simulation. The simulation included the selection of test subjects of similar physical build to the accident victims who then performed the maneuvers leading to the injury, but in deeper water. High speed movies (200 frames per second) were taken, above and below the water, to measure the motion. A frame by frame analysis provided data to determine the trajectory and velocity profiles of the test subject. The maneuvers studied included diving from the pool edge, diving from various board types and sliding down various sliding board configurations.
Technical Paper

General Aviation Crash Survivability

1978-02-01
780017
Statistics indicate that during the past decade (1967-1976) the number of general aviation aircraft involved in an accident is equivalent to at least 38% of the total U.S. production during that period. Estimates that an aircraft will be involved in an accident over a 20 year life range are as high as 60-70%. Recognition of this probability has led to crashworthiness and occupant survivability “packaging” design concepts as offering the most realistic approach to reduction of serious and fatal injuries when an accident occurs. This paper reviews and illustrates current general aviation aircraft accident experience relative to occupant impact injury and damage indexes, and provides new data relative to current-generation aircraft.
Technical Paper

Study of Human Impact Tolerance Using Investigations and Simulations of Free-Falls

1977-02-01
770915
A study of free-fall accidents and resulting injuries was conducted to determine how useful these types of data could be in establishing human injury tolerance limits. “Tolerance” was examined primarily for children at two levels - reversible injury and threat to survival. The specific objectives were to investigate specific free-falls in sufficient depth to permit biomedical or mathematical reconstruction of the fall, simulate selected free-falls to estimate impact response, and compare predicted responses with observed injuries as a means of estimating human tolerance levels. From more than 2100 reported free-falls, 110 were investigated on-site. Seven head-first and three feet-first falls were then simulated using the MVMA 2-D Crash Victim Simulator. Newspaper reports of free-falls showed that males fell six times as often as females and most often while at work. Children fell from windows and balconies more often than from any other hazard.
Technical Paper

Civil Aircraft Restraint Systems: State-of-the-Art Evaluation of Standards, Experimental Data, and Accident Experience

1977-02-01
770154
The importance of crashworthiness and the role of restraint systems in occupant impact protection in U.S. civil aircraft design is being increasingly recognized. Current estimates of the number of fatalities which could be prevented annually in survivable accidents range from 33 to 94%. This study reviews the development of existing Federal Aviation Administration restraint system standards from the first requirement for safety belts in the Air Commerce Regulations of 1926 to present 14 CFR 1.1. The FAA and industry standards are critically evaluated for Parts 23 (small airplanes), 25 (air transports), 27 (rotorcraft), and 29 (transport category rotorcraft). State-of-the-art developments, including an overview of previous accident experience, results of experimental studies, comparison with other standards, and primary data sources are provided.
Technical Paper

A Critical Assessment of the Use of Non-Human Responding Surrogates for Safety System Evaluation

1976-02-01
760805
The basic physical mechanisms underlying recent experimentally observed anomalous behavior in the impact performance of safety helmets evaluated with soft (human-like) and hard (magnesium alloy) headform surrogates are qualitatively and quantitatively explained in this paper. The principal and physical mechanisms brought to light in the headform surrogate investigation are directly applicable to the utilization of other forms of surrogates (head -neck, thorax, whole body). In particular the results raise a serious question as to the validity of using non-human responding surrogates, with human generated injury tolerance data, for the purpose of assessing safety system performance. The implications of the results are that good crash-impact protective devices (helmets, restraints, etc.) could be penalized and, equally important, less safe crash-impact protective system designs could result from improper assessment of safety system performance.
Technical Paper

Crashworthiness Investigation of General Aviation Accidents

1975-02-01
750537
General aviation accident investigations can provide valuable data to the design engineer concerning the crash performance of current models and can indicate needed improvements for occupant protection in future aircraft. Current statistics and the historical background of major investigations during the past 65 years are provided. A five-year study of general aviation accidents occurring in the State of Michigan is used as a basis to illustrate recent findings relative to occupant injury mechanisms, relative crash protection, and crashworthiness performance of current models of aircraft. Results indicate that the degree of structural damage may not relate to the degree of occupant injury when the cabin area remains relatively intact. A primary requirement is documented for adequate upper-torso restraint for all occupants, and the excellent crash performance of such a system is described.
Technical Paper

Biomechanical Properties of the Human Neck in Lateral Flexion

1975-02-01
751156
Properties of the human neck which may influence a person's susceptibility to “whiplash” injury during lateral impact have been studied in 96 normal subjects. Subjects were chosen on the basis of age, sex, and stature and data were grouped into six primary categories based on sex (F, M) and age (18-24, 35-44, 62-74). The data include: measures of head, neck and body anthropometry in standing and simulated automotive seating positions, three-dimensional range of motion of the head and neck, head/neck response to low-level acceleration, and both stretch reflex time and voluntary isometric muscle force in the lateral direction. Reflex times are found to vary from about 30 to 70 ms with young and middle aged persons having faster times than older persons, and females having faster times than males. Muscle strength decreases with age and males are, on the average, stronger than females.
Technical Paper

Cervical Range of Motion and Dynamic Response and Strength of Cervical Muscles

1973-02-01
730975
Basic physical characteristics of the neck have been defined which have application to the design of biomechanical models, anthropometric dummies, and occupant crash protection devices. The study was performed using a group of 180 volunteers chosen on the basis of sex, age (18-74 years), and stature. Measurements from each subject included anthropometry, cervical range-of-motion (observed with both x-rays and photographs), the dynamic response of the cervical flexor and extensor muscles to a controlled jerk, and the maximum voluntary strength of the cervical muscles. Data are presented in tabular and graphic form for total range-of-motion, cervical muscle reflex time, decelerations of the head, muscle activation time, and cervical muscle strength. The range-of-motion of females was found to average 1-12 deg greater than that of males, depending upon age, and a definite degradation in range-of-motion was observed with increasing age.
Technical Paper

Injury Frequency and Head Restraint Effectiveness in Rear-End Impact Accidents

1972-02-01
720967
All of the rear-end impact accidents occurring in the city of Rochester, New York, in a three-month period were surveyed by tabulation of the police accident reports. Special police information forms, telephone interviews, and mail questionnaires were used for further data acquisition. Vehicle photographs and medical examinations were conducted for approximately every 20th vehicle. During the data collection period, 691 rear-end impacts occurred. Although a computer program revealed 1371 accidents, defects in the program accounted for the large difference. Whiplash injury frequency based on telephone interview and mail questionnaire data obtained one to seven days after the accident revealed a whiplash injury frequency of 38%, which was approximately twice that determined by on-scene police investigators. Head restraints reduced whiplash frequency by 14% and fixed head restraints appeared to be more effective.
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