Vehicle Occupants in Traffic Accidents

  • Garrett A. Mattos
Reference work entry


Occupant motion and injury response in motor vehicle crashes is dictated by the forces applied to the human body in combination with the relative motion between occupant and vehicle. These responses are complex and dependent on many factors including those relating to crash, vehicle, and occupant characteristics. The study of occupant response is an important step in improving vehicle design and crashworthiness. This chapter provides an overview of the important aspects of occupant response for the four main crash modes: frontal, side, rollover, and rear. The general characteristics of occupant kinematic response are discussed with respect to each crash mode. Typical injury patterns and mechanisms are identified and their relationship to occupant motion and interaction with the crash environment is highlighted.


Crash mode Injury patterns Occupant kinematics Serious injury 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Transport and Road Safety (TARS) Research CentreUniversity of New South WalesSydneyAustralia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Andrew McIntosh
    • 1
  1. 1.CremorneAustralia

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