Factors affecting ejection risk in rollover crashes.

Funk, J.R. Cormier, J.M. Bain, C.E. Wirth, J.L. Bonugli, E.B. & Watson, R.A.

Ejection greatly increases the risk of injury and fatality in a rollover crash. The purpose of this study was to determine the crash, vehicle, and occupant characteristics that affect the risk of ejection in rollovers. Information from real world rollover crashes occurring from 2000 – 2010 was obtained from the National Automotive Sampling System (NASS) in order to analyse the effect of the following parameters on ejection risk: seatbelt use, rollover severity, vehicle type, seating position, roof crush, side curtain airbag deployment, glazing type, and occupant age, gender, and size. Seatbelt use was found to reduce the risk of partial ejection and virtually eliminate the risk of complete ejection. For belted occupants, the risk of partial ejection risk was significantly increased in rollover crashes involving more roof inversions, light trucks and vans (LTVs), and larger occupants. For unbelted occupants, the risk of complete ejection was significantly increased in rollover crashes involving more roof inversions, LTVs, far side occupants, and higher levels of roof crush. Roof crush was not a significant predictor of ejection after normalizing for rollover severity. Curtain airbag deployment was associated with reduced rates of partial and complete ejection, but the effect was not statistically significant, perhaps due to the small sample size (n = 89 raw cases with curtain deployments). A much greater proportion of occupants who were ejected in spite of curtain airbag deployment passed through the sunroof and other portals as opposed to the adjacent side window compared to occupants who were ejected in rollovers without a curtain airbag deployment. The primary factors that reduce ejection risk in rollover crashes are, in generally decreasing order of importance: seatbelt use, fewer roof inversions, passenger car body type, curtain airbag deployment, near side seating position, and small occupant size. (Author/publisher)

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Library number
20140086 t ST [electronic version only]

In: Proceedings of the 56th Annual Conference of the Association for the Advancement of Automotive Medicine AAAM, Seattle, Washington, October 14-17, 2012, p. 203-211

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