Side Impact Test

Side crashes account for the second highest frequency of death and serious injuries in regions like Europe. Compared to a frontal impact, there is very little space inside the vehicle interior in which to absorb energy and as a result severe injuries to the head and the chest are common. A deformable barrier is mounted on a trolley and is driven at 50km/h into the side of the stationary test vehicle at right angles. A side impact dummy representing an average male is placed in the driver or passenger seat and child dummies are placed in child restraint systems in the rear. The test ensures that there is adequate protection of the critical body regions. This has driven the strengthening of the structures of vehicles around the B-pillar (between front and rear door), the fitment of side impact and side curtain airbags in cars but also the development of less obvious energy-absorbing structures in seats and door panels. The timing and deployment of airbags must be very carefully controlled to ensure that they provide the greatest protection possible.

How safe is your car?