IIHS Says Current Seat Belt Systems Are Dangerous for Rear Passengers - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum
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#1 Old 04-25-2019
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IIHS Says Current Seat Belt Systems Are Dangerous for Rear Passengers



The cars we drive today are nothing like the ones we drove in the past, in more ways than one. Safety-wise, the advancements have been immense, and as we move forward fewer people get injured or killed as a result of car crashes.

Yet in-car safety is not the same for all a car’s passengers, a new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found. And that’s because passengers in the front are far more protected than the ones in the rear, even in the event of a frontal collision.

According to the safety watchdog, under the scrutiny fell rear-seat injuries and fatalities that occurred in 2014, and the results show that even when wearing seatbelts in the rear passengers get injured and even killed in frontal crashes.

The IIHS blames this trend on the fact that safety systems for the front occupants have evolved constantly, while the ones for the people in the back have pretty much remained limited.

IIHS looked at 117 crashes in which rear-seat occupants were killed or seriously injured and found that the most common type of injury was to the chest, followed by head injuries. To blame for chest injuries appears to be excessive forces from the shoulder belt, while head injuries are caused by the passengers hitting parts of the vehicle’s interior.

"Manufacturers have put a lot of work into improving protection for drivers and front-seat passengers. Our moderate overlap front crash test and, more recently, our driver-side and passenger-side small overlap front tests are a big reason why," IIHS President David Harkey said in a statement.

"We hope a new evaluation will spur similar progress in the back seat."

The results of this study, alongside future ones, will be used by the organization to devise a new type of frontal crash test that will try to evaluate occupant protection in the rear as well.

The full details on the study and the proposed solutions can be found in the document attached below.


https://www.autoevolution.com/news/i...047.html#press

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#2 Old 04-25-2019
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Originally Posted by Berliner Heckflosse View Post


The cars we drive today are nothing like the ones we drove in the past, in more ways than one. Safety-wise, the advancements have been immense, and as we move forward fewer people get injured or killed as a result of car crashes.

Yet in-car safety is not the same for all a car’s passengers, a new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found. And that’s because passengers in the front are far more protected than the ones in the rear, even in the event of a frontal collision.

According to the safety watchdog, under the scrutiny fell rear-seat injuries and fatalities that occurred in 2014, and the results show that even when wearing seatbelts in the rear passengers get injured and even killed in frontal crashes.

The IIHS blames this trend on the fact that safety systems for the front occupants have evolved constantly, while the ones for the people in the back have pretty much remained limited.

IIHS looked at 117 crashes in which rear-seat occupants were killed or seriously injured and found that the most common type of injury was to the chest, followed by head injuries. To blame for chest injuries appears to be excessive forces from the shoulder belt, while head injuries are caused by the passengers hitting parts of the vehicle’s interior.

"Manufacturers have put a lot of work into improving protection for drivers and front-seat passengers. Our moderate overlap front crash test and, more recently, our driver-side and passenger-side small overlap front tests are a big reason why," IIHS President David Harkey said in a statement.

"We hope a new evaluation will spur similar progress in the back seat."

The results of this study, alongside future ones, will be used by the organization to devise a new type of frontal crash test that will try to evaluate occupant protection in the rear as well.

The full details on the study and the proposed solutions can be found in the document attached below.


https://www.autoevolution.com/news/i...047.html#press


Very interesting but not surprising. The attached report identified 3 critical issues.
1) Unbelted rear occupants. No technology required here, always wear that seatbelt. However Australian NCAP ratings give more points for seat belt warnings for rear seat too.
2) Force Limiters in the selt system. These are a modified spindle in the belt retracter, and cost 20 - 50 cents per belt.
They limit loads on the chest to about 4kN usually. Great value, very effective, and the IIHS note many of the cases they studied severe chest injuries contributing.
3) belt pre-tensioners, cost more. Think about $5 per seat as part of the retractor. ( not $20). They remove slack in the belt and so reduce passenger excursion and also reduce peak loads too.
Trouble is, rear seats are occupied in so few vehicles and even then, not on every trip, making it harder to get priority to upgrade safety for rear seat occupants. But I would argue that given the amount spent on infotainment systems these days, rear seat safety is affordable, but probably needs to be mandated to be a level playing field for all manufacturers.

But it is not as simple as just fitting all three as standard. These need to be carefully engineered.
We know the driver is adult or nearly adult and typically of a certain size minimum, but a load limiter for
an adult is way too stiff to help much for a 20kg child in the rear. It won’t harm, but it may not do any good.
Because of the wide range of occupant size and mass in the rear seats, good all round for them is complex.
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#3 Old 04-25-2019
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Because of the wide range of occupant size and mass in the rear seats, good all round for them is complex.
True that.... the solution to the problem buy more 2 seaters......



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#4 Old 04-25-2019
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They throw out a lot of numbers, but I'd like to see a comparison to front injuries before I take this as gospel. I've see a lot of auto accidents and cant remember any where the rear passengers suffered more injuries than the front under equal conditions (seat belts, etc.).

Last edited by Truck; 04-25-2019 at 12:34 PM.
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