Wheelchair and crash dummy response in far-side lateral impacts
Authors: Miriam A. Manary, Nichole L. Ritchie, Lawrence W. Schneider
Three sled tests simulating side-impact collisions were conducted to identify safety issues associated with protection of wheelchair-seated occupants. In each test, a midsize adult male anthropomorphic test device (ATD) was restrained by a three-point belt and seated in a commercial transit wheelchair that was secured by a four-point strap-type tiedown. In two tests, the shoulder was belt routed over the outboard shoulder, while it was routed over the inboard shoulder in the third test. The wheelchair was well secured in all three tests, but the ATD’s head and upper torso were not effectively restrained with the outboard shoulder belt routing. In two tests, the ATD loaded and severely deformed the wheelchair armrest. The ATD upper torso was more effectively restrained when the shoulder belt was positioned over the inboard shoulder but the improved overall restraint could potentially increase load on the occupant neck.