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Various German and international publications show that the safety of rear-seat passengers in modern cars has not reached the high level of those in the front seats [1, 2, 3]. The aim of the present study [4] was to ascertain the current level of safety of rear-seat passengers in cars and obtain and assess the need for safety by means of suitable measures. To this end, real accident data was examined, surveys and extensive numerical simulations were carried out, and sled tests were analyzed.

The accident database of GIDAS (GIDAS = German In-Depth Accident Study) and that of the UDV (German Insurers Accident Research) were used as the basis for the analysis of the accident data.

To investigate typical behavior on the rear seats, 800 people aged between 18 and 65 were surveyed online. To deepen the knowledge obtained, interviews were also conducted with focus groups in five German cities. In the surveys it was found, for example, that rear-seat passengers often adopt a different sitting position from the normal one (i.e. the one used with crash-test dummies). The findings from the accident analysis and survey were used to create and validate multiple FEM models, which allow different influencing factors to be evaluated on the basis of biomechanical load values.

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