Ambulance Patient Compartment Seating Integrity and Occupant Restraint
This SAE Recommended Practice describes the testing procedures that may be used to evaluate the integrity of ground ambulance-based occupant seating and occupant restraint systems for workers and civilians transported in the patient compartment of an ambulance when exposed to a frontal or side impact. This Recommended Practice was based on ambulance patient compartment dynamics and is not applicable to other vehicle applications or seating positions. This Recommended Practice is structured to accommodate seating systems installed in multiple attitudes including but not limited to side-facing, rear-facing, and forward-facing. Its purpose is to provide ambulance seating manufacturers, ambulance occupant restraint manufacturers, ambulance builders, and end-users with testing procedures and, where appropriate, acceptance criteria that, to a great extent ensures the occupant seating and occupant restraint system meet similar performance criteria as FMVSS 208 requires for seat belted passengers in light vehicles. The test conditions utilized are standardized orientations that do not reflect potential conditions that may exist prior to impact such as braking and/or steering and their effects on the initial positions of the occupants and surfaces relative to the occupants. Descriptions of the test set-up, test instrumentation, photographic/video coverage, text fixture, and performance metrics are included.
Rationale: This Recommended Practice is approaching its 5 year reaffirmation date. As a part of that process, we would like to revised a note to expand discussion regarding the type and use of crash test dummies. This proposed change is based on input received from an independent crash testing facility based on their experiences with crash test dummy failures. The objective of this change is to reduce dummy breakage, and thus test cost, without impacting the goals of the test itself.