The Causes of Head Injury in Vehicle-Pedestrian Impacts: Comparing the Relative Danger of Vehicle and Road Surface
This research uses simulations of vehicle-pedestrian collisions to determine if the risk of pedestrian head injury is greater from impact with the vehicle or from impact with the ground, and to determine the influence of vehicle speed, vehicle type, and pedestrian stance on the injury risk. Five speeds, two vehicle types and four pedestrian stances are examined. In addition, a smaller set of simulations is included to determine the influence of body orientation just prior to ground impact. As anticipated, risk of head injury from both the vehicle and the ground tends to increase with vehicle speed, but injury risk from the ground is less predictable. At lower speeds, the vehicle tends to pose a greater risk of injury than does the ground, while at higher speeds the probability of injury from both the vehicle and ground is typically very large.