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Technical Paper

Methodology for Estimating the Benefits of Lane Departure Warnings using Event Data Recorders

2018-04-03
2018-01-0509
Road departures are one of the most deadly crash modes, accounting for nearly one third of all crash fatalities in the US. Lane departure warning (LDW) systems can warn the driver of the departure and lane departure prevention (LDP) systems can steer the vehicle back into the lane. One purpose of these systems is to reduce the quantity of road departure crashes. This paper presents a method to predict the maximum effectiveness of these systems. Thirty-nine (39) real world crashes from the National Automotive Sampling System (NASS) Crashworthiness Data System (CDS) database were reconstructed using pre-crash velocities downloaded for each case from the vehicle event data recorder (EDR). The pre-crash velocities were mapped onto the vehicle crash trajectory. The simulations assumed a warning was delivered when the lead tire crossed the lane line. Each case was simulated twice with driver reaction times of 0.38 s and 1.36 s after which time the driver began steering back toward the road.
Technical Paper

Preliminary Estimates of Near Side Crash Injury Risk in Best Performing Passenger Vehicles

2018-04-03
2018-01-0548
The goal of this paper is to estimate near-side injury risk in vehicles with the best side impact performance in the U.S. New Car Assessment Program (NCAP). The longer-term goal is to predict the incidence of crashes and injury outcomes in the U.S. in a future fleet of the 2025-time frame after current active and passive safety countermeasures are fully implemented. Our assumption was that, by 2025, all new vehicles will have side impact passive safety performance equivalent to current U.S. NCAP five star ratings. The analysis was based on real-world crashes extracted from case years 2010-2015 in the National Automotive Sampling System / Crashworthiness Data System (NASS/CDS) in which front-row occupants of late-model vehicles (Model Year 2011+) were exposed to a near-side crash.
Technical Paper

Comparison of Time to Collision and Enhanced Time to Collision at Brake Application during Normal Driving

2016-04-05
2016-01-1448
The effectiveness of Forward Collision Warning (FCW) or similar crash warning/mitigation systems is highly dependent on driver acceptance. If a FCW system delivers the warning too early, it may distract or annoy the driver and cause them to deactivate the system. In order to design a system activation threshold that more closely matches driver expectations, system designers must understand when drivers would normally apply the brake. One of the most widely used metrics to establish FCW threshold is Time to Collision (TTC). One limitation of TTC is that it assumes constant vehicle velocity. Enhanced Time to Collision (ETTC) is potentially a more accurate metric of perceived collision risk due to its consideration of vehicle acceleration. This paper compares and contrasts the distribution of ETTC and TTC at brake onset in normal car-following situations, and presents probability models of TTC and ETTC values at braking across a range of vehicle speeds.
Journal Article

Investigation of Driver Lane Keeping Behavior in Normal Driving based on Naturalistic Driving Study Data

2016-04-05
2016-01-1449
Lane departure warning (LDW) systems can detect an impending road departure and deliver an alert to allow the driver to steer back to the lane. LDW has great potential to reduce the number of road departure crashes, but the effectiveness is highly dependent upon driver acceptance. If the driver perceives there is little danger after receiving an alert, the driver may become annoyed and deactivate the system. Most current LDW systems rely heavily upon distance to lane boundary (DTLB) in the decision to deliver an alert. There is early evidence that in normal driving DTLB may be only one of a host of other cues which drivers use in lane keeping and in their perception of lane departure risk. A more effective threshold for LDW could potentially be delivered if there was a better understanding of this normal lane keeping behavior. The objective of this paper is to investigate the lane keeping behavior of drivers in normal driving.
Journal Article

Characterization of Lane Departure Crashes Using Event Data Recorders Extracted from Real-World Collisions

2013-04-08
2013-01-0730
Lane Departure Warning (LDW) is a production active safety system that can warn drivers of an unintended departure. Critical in the design of LDW and other departure countermeasures is understanding pre-crash driver behavior in crashes. The objective of this study was to gain insight into pre-crash driver behavior in departure crashes using Event Data Recorders (EDRs). EDRs are units equipped on many passenger vehicles that are able to store vehicle data, including pre-crash data in many cases. This study used 256 EDRs that were downloaded from GM vehicles involved in real-world lane departure collisions. The crashes were investigated as part of the NHTSA's NASS/CDS database years 2000 to 2011. Nearly half of drivers (47%) made little or no change to their vehicle speed prior to the collision and slightly fewer decreased their speed (43%). Drivers who did not change speed were older (median age 41) compared to those who decreased speed (median age 27).
Technical Paper

Foot and Ankle Injuries to Drivers in Between-Rail Crashes

2013-04-08
2013-01-1243
The research question investigated in this study is what are the key attributes of foot and ankle injury in the between-rail frontal crash? For the foot and ankle, what was the type of interior surface contacted and the type of resulting trauma? The method was to study with in-depth case reviews of NASS-CDS cases where a driver suffered an AIS=2 foot or ankle injury in between-rail crashes. Cases were limited to belted occupants in vehicles equipped with air bags. The reviews concentrated on coded and non-coded data, identifying especially those factors contributing to the injuries of the driver's foot/ankle. This study examines real-world crash data between the years 1997-2009 with a focus on frontal crashes involving 1997 and later model year vehicles. The raw data count for between-rail crashes was 732, corresponding to 227,305 weighted, tow-away crashes.
Technical Paper

Occupant-to-Occupant Interaction and Impact Injury Risk in Side Impact Crashes

2008-11-03
2008-22-0013
To date, efforts to improve occupant protection in side impact crashes have concentrated on reducing the injuries to occupants seated on the struck side of the vehicle arising from contact with the intruding side structure and/or external objects. Crash investigations indicate that occupants on the struck side of a vehicle may also be injured by contact with an adjacent occupant in the same seating row. Anecdotal information suggests that the injury consequences of occupant-to-occupant impacts can be severe, and sometimes life threatening. Occupant-to-occupant impacts leave little evidence in the vehicle, and hence these impacts can be difficult for crash investigators to detect and may be underreported. The objective of this study was to evaluate the risk of impact injury from occupant-to-occupant impacts in side impact vehicle crashes. The study examined 9608 crashes extracted from NASS/CDS 1993-2006 to investigate the risk of occupant-to-occupant impacts.
Technical Paper

Evaluating Frontal Crash Test Force-Deformation Data for Vehicle to Vehicle Frontal Crash Compatibility

2008-04-14
2008-01-0813
Vehicle stiffness is one of the three major factors in vehicle to vehicle compatibility in a frontal crash; the other two factors are vehicle mass and frontal geometry. Vehicle to vehicle compatibility in turn is an increasingly important topic due to the rapid change in the size and characteristics of the automotive fleet, particularly the increase of the percentage of trucks and SUVs. Due to the non-linear nature of the mechanics of vehicle structure, frontal stiffness is not a properly defined metric. This research is aimed at developing a well defined method to quantify frontal stiffness for vehicle-to-vehicle crash compatibility. The method to be developed should predict crash outcome and controlling the defined metric should improve the crash outcome. The criterion that is used to judge the aggressivity of a vehicle in this method is the amount of deformation caused to the vulnerable vehicles when crashed with the subject vehicle.
Technical Paper

Vehicle Frontal Stiffness in a Front to Front Crash

2005-04-11
2005-01-1375
In the effort to understand and solve the frontal crash compatibility problem, one needs to use values of frontal stiffness. Various definitions of stiffness have been used in other studies based on measurements from NHTSA's 35mph frontal NCAP test. Those definitions varied from assuming a linear stiffness based on static crush to more refined ones that vary with time dependent crush. A major consideration in selecting a method is the amount of vehicle damage that occurs in an incompatible crash. To partially address this issue, a method was introduced based on the energy absorbed in a front to front crash at 25mph approach speed. Four alternative definitions of stiffness were studied.
Technical Paper

Alternative Fuel Tanks for Pickups with Sidesaddle Tanks

2005-04-11
2005-01-1427
Seventeen full-scale crash tests were conducted to evaluate technologies to reduce the vulnerability of sidesaddle tanks on full size GM pickup trucks manufactured during the period 1973-1987. These vehicles were alleged by the U.S. Department of Transportation to be vulnerable in severe side impacts. The test program was intended to evaluate designs that would reduce vulnerability in all crash directions. The best test results were obtained by two strategies that relocated the tank to less vulnerable locations. The two locations were: (1) in the cargo bed (bed mounted tank) and (2) underneath the bed, ahead of the rear axle and between the frame rails (center-mounted tank). Tanks mounted in these locations were subjected to a series of crash tests that simulated severe front, side, rear and rollover crashes. The crash environment for these tests was more severe than required by FMVSS 301 “Fuel System Integrity”.
Technical Paper

Side Impact Injury Risk for Belted Far Side Passenger Vehicle Occupants

2005-04-11
2005-01-0287
In a side impact, the occupants on both the struck, or near side, of the vehicle and the occupants on the opposite, or far side, of the vehicle are at risk of injury. Since model year 1997, all passenger cars in the U.S. have been required to comply with FMVSS No. 214, a safety standard that mandates a minimum level of side crash protection for near side occupants. No such federal safety standard exists for far side occupants. The mechanism of far side injury is believed to be quite different than the injury mechanism for near side injury. Far side impact protection may require the development of different countermeasures than those which are effective for near side impact protection. This paper evaluates the risk of side crash injury for far side occupants as a basis for developing far side impact injury countermeasures. Based on the analysis of NASS/CDS 1993–2002, this study examines the injury outcome of over 4500 car, light truck, and van occupants subjected to far side impact.
Technical Paper

Using CIREN Data to Assess the Performance of the Second Generation of Air Bags

2004-03-08
2004-01-0842
The U.S. Department of Transportation-sponsored Crash Injury Research and Engineering Network (CIREN) program offers a reasonable look at the efficacy of second-generation air bags. This paper examines the data from the William Lehman Injury Research Center (WLIRC). The WLIRC data is a near census of crashes in the Miami-Dade region with occupants that appear to be severely injured. The percentage of deaths among trauma patients in the WLIRC data as a function of delta-V for first-generation air bags was higher than expected at lower delta-V's. There were nine driver fatalities at delta-V's of less than 20 mph (four involving short stature occupants, four with elderly occupants, and one due to significant intrusion and/or vehicle incompatibility). The data supported NHTSA's conclusion that first-generation air bags were too aggressive for occupants in close proximity to the deploying air bag and too aggressive for older persons.
Technical Paper

The Evolution of Side Crash Compatibility Between Cars, Light Trucks and Vans

2003-03-03
2003-01-0899
Several research studies have concluded that light trucks and vans (LTVs) are incompatible with cars in traffic collisions. These studies have noted that crash incompatibility is most severe in side crashes. These early research efforts however were conducted before complete introduction of crash injury countermeasures such as dynamic side impact protection. Based upon U.S. traffic accident statistics, this paper investigates the side crash compatibility of late model cars, light trucks and vans equipped with countermeasures designed specifically to provide side crash protection. The paper explores both LTV-to-car crash compatibility and crash incompatibility in car-to-car collisions.
Technical Paper

The emerging threat of light truck impacts with pedestrians

2001-06-04
2001-06-0082
In the United States, passenger vehicles are shifting from a fleet populated primarily by cars to a fleet dominated by light trucks and vans (LTVs). Because light trucks are heavier, stiffer, and geometrically more blunt than passenger cars, they pose a dramatically different type of threat to pedestrians. This paper will investigate the effect of striking vehicle type on pedestrian fatalities and injuries. The paper will present and compare pedestrian impact risk factors for sport utility vehicles, pickup trucks, vans, and cars as developed from analyses of U.S. accident statistics.
Technical Paper

Car Crash Compatibility: The Prospects for International Harmonization

1999-03-01
1999-01-0069
Crash incompatibility between disparate classes of passenger vehicles is an issue of growing global concern. There is widespread consensus, both in the U.S. and internationally, that any regulation or test procedure focusing on crash compatibility should be a globally harmonized standard. However, this may prove to be a challenging effort due to huge differences in U.S. and international fleet composition. The U.S. fleet is dominated by a growing light truck component, and has few of the sub-1000 kg cars that are prevalent in Australian and European fleets. This paper will examine the structure of the passenger vehicle fleets in the U.S., Europe, and Australia, the relationship between fleet composition and real world crash fatalities and the prospects for a single, globally accepted, crash compatibility test procedure.
Technical Paper

Crashworthiness Safety Features in Rollover Crashes

1998-09-29
982296
Rollover crashes continue to be a serious and growing vehicle safety problem. Rollovers account for about 9% of passenger car crashes, and 26% of light truck crashes. Belt use in rollover crashes is about 51%, compared with 62% in planar crashes. Overall, 26.4% of the serious and fatal injuries to occupants exposed to crashes are in rollovers. Among this injured population 74.4% are unbelted. In light trucks, rollovers account for 47.4% of the serious or fatal injuries. Unbelted occupants suffer about 87% of the serious injuries and fatalities in light truck rollovers. The use of safety belts offers a dramatic reduction in injury rates for rollover crashes. For belted occupants of pickup trucks and utility vehicles in rollover crashes, the injury rates are about the same as for belted occupants of passenger cars in planar crashes. Improvementsts in safety belts offer large opportunities in safety.
Technical Paper

Effect of Occupant Position and Air Bag Inflation Parameters on Driver Injury Measures

1998-02-23
980637
This paper investigates the effects of driver airbag inflation characteristics, airbag relative position, airbag to dummy relative velocity, and steering column characteristics using a finite element model of a vehicle, air bag, and Hybrid III 50% male dummy. Simulation is conducted in a static test environment using a validated finite element model. Several static simulation tests are performed where the air bag module's position is mounted in a rigid steering wheel and the vertical and horizontal distances are varied relative to the dummy. Three vertical alignments are used: one position corresponds to the head centered on module, another position corresponds to the neck centered on module, and the third position centers the chest on the module. Horizontal alignments vary from 0 mm to 50 mm to 100 mm. All of these tests are simulated using a typical pre-1998 type inflation curve (mass flow rate of gas entering the bag).
Technical Paper

The Aggressivity of Light Trucks and Vans in Traffic Crashes

1998-02-23
980908
Light trucks and vans (LTVs) currently account for over one-third of registered U.S. passenger vehicles. Yet, collisions between cars and LTVs account for over one half of all fatalities in light vehicle-to-vehicle crashes. Nearly 60% of all fatalities in light vehicle side impacts occur when the striking vehicle is an LTV. This paper will examine this apparent incompatibility between cars and LTVs in traffic crashes. An analysis of U.S. crash statistics will be presented to explore the aggressivity of LTVs in impacts with cars and identify those design imbalances between the cars and LTVs, e.g., mass, stiffness, and geometry, which lead to these severe crash incompatibilities.
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