Rear-End impact-Crash prevention and occupant protection
Paper in proceedings, 2015
This study presents the enhancements of knowledge as well as countermeasures addressing crash prevention and occupant protection in rear-end impact situations. It includes the second-generation Whiplash Protection System (WHIPS) together with occupant pre-positioning by tightening the electrical reversible safety belts, acceleration reduction by applying the brakes when the car is at a standstill and rearward flashing lights triggered by sensors identifying a potential rear-end impact. Significant steps towards whiplash injury reduction through rear-end impact crash prevention and occupant protection are taken by integrating pre-crash sensing and crash performance to address real-world safety needs. The pre-crash sensing information, with safety belt tightening, addresses some of the main high-risk situations in rear-end impacts, such as extensive head to head-restraint distance. By adjusting the occupants to sit closer to the seat at time of impact, the full benefit of the seat protection can be achieved. The WHIPS has been further improved by focusing energy absorption together with even and close support, and by addressing small and large occupants, both male and female, thus adding to overall occupant protection potential. Through the use of pre-crash sensing, opponent warning system and a braking functionality, additional injury reductions can be achieved and some crashes avoided altogether. Further studies are needed to quantify these effects.