Air Bags and Infants - The Need for Placing Rear-Facing Infants in the Back Seat Brings About Accide...
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Dan Goor - XSCI, Inc. Sheldon Lee Stucki - SEIS, Inc. March 5, 2001 PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Air Bags and Infants - The Need for Placing Rear-Facing Infants in the Back Seat Brings About Accident-Causing Distractions. Dan Goor - XSCI, Inc. Sheldon Lee Stucki - SEIS, Inc. March 5, 2001. Current Air Bag Crash Environment.

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Dan Goor - XSCI, Inc. Sheldon Lee Stucki - SEIS, Inc. March 5, 2001

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Dan goor xsci inc sheldon lee stucki seis inc march 5 2001

Air Bags and Infants - The Need for Placing Rear-Facing Infants in the Back Seat Brings About Accident-Causing Distractions

Dan Goor - XSCI, Inc.

Sheldon Lee Stucki - SEIS, Inc.

March 5, 2001


Current air bag crash environment

Current Air Bag Crash Environment

  • Overall, air bags are effective in saving lives.As of 4/1/2000 about 5,000 lives (NHTSA)

  • Certain occupants may be “at risk” when too close to deploying air bag

  • Recent air bags with de-powering, dual stage inflation, etc., have reduced the problem


Occupants most at risk from air bags

Occupants Most “At Risk” from Air Bags

  • Small drivers with seat positioned near air bag module.

  • Unbelted child passengers sitting near the air bag and/or with pre-crash events.

  • Infants in rear-facing CSS’s placed near or against the air bag, due to configuration.


Air bags and infants in rear facing child seats rfcss

Air Bags and Infants in Rear-Facing Child Seats (RFCSS)

  • 18 infants in RFCSS’s killed by air bags, projected 15 killed annually with 98 fleet.

  • Even “low” inflation air bags may be hazardous to infants in RFCSS’s

  • Back seat safest but parents still place infants in front seat with air bags despite warnings.


Reasons parents place infants in the front seat fraser group study

Reasons Parents Place Infants in the Front Seat - Fraser Group Study

  • 59% felt that infants in RFCSS’s in the back seat are very distracting and 31% somewhat distracting.

  • 69% felt that it was much easier to care for infants in RFCSS’s in the front seat and 25% somewhat easier.


Reasons parents place infants in the front seat fraser group study1

Reasons Parents Place Infants in the Front Seat - Fraser Group Study

  • 79.5% felt that infants in RFCSS’s in the back seat could be distracting enough to cause crashes.

  • 83% felt that infants in RFCSS’s in the front seat are less apt to cause accidents than infants in RFCSS’s in the back seat.


Development of an air bag safe rfcss

Development of an “Air Bag Safe” RFCSS

  • Current RFCSS’s unable to withstand air bag deployment forces and protect infant.

  • New design incorporates structural rigidity, energy absorption & geometry improvements to withstand forces of air bag deployment and protect the infant.


Benefits of using air bag safe rfcss in front seat

Benefits of Using “Air Bag Safe” RFCSS in Front Seat

  • Reduce/eliminate fatalities from deploying air bags.

  • Reduce crashes/injuries/fatalities by removing rear seat distractions.

  • Provide further protection to infants in all crashes


Estimate benefits of using air bag safe rfcss in front seat

Estimate Benefits of Using “Air Bag Safe” RFCSS in Front Seat

  • Estimate % crashes caused by distraction to driver by infants in RFCSS’s in rear seat.

  • Estimate current injuries/fatalities reduced by moving infants to front seat.

  • Adjust injury/fatality savings by applying higher risk for moving to front seat.


Infants in child safety seats by location and environment

Infants in Child Safety Seats by Location and Environment

“On-Road” - 19 City Study, 1990-1991

“In Crashes” – 1990-1991 NASS GES


Benefits of removing rear seat distractions

Benefits of Removing Rear Seat Distractions

  • Crash involvement rate per on road vehicle 33 % lower for infants in the front seat compared to rear seat.

  • Assume that injuries and fatalities are reduced by the same 33 % if infants are in front seat.


Benefits of moving rear seat infants to front seat

Benefits of Moving Rear Seat Infants to Front Seat


Benefits of moving rear seat infants to front seat1

Benefits of Moving Rear Seat Infants to Front Seat


Benefits for other occupants front seat only

Benefits for Other Occupants (Front Seat Only)


Conclusions

Conclusions

  • Infants in RFCSS’s are still “at risk” from air bag deployment.

  • A new design for a RFCSS will provide protection with air bag deployment.

  • Moving infants to the front seat may reduce crashes by 33 % by removing distractions.


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