Bringing together the disciplines of physics, engineering, and biology, Biomechanics refers to the forces that act upon us and the impact they have.
With this in mind, Biomechanical analysis can be invaluable when determining how many occupants would move positions in a collision, as well as how they would have interacted with each other at the time of the incident.
This allows us to assist the collision investigation team in establishing where occupants were seated at the time of the collision, and most importantly, who was driving the vehicle.
In addition to creating full computer reconstructions we also use our knowledge and understanding of biomechanics and of occupant safety systems to develop new ways of analysing the available information.
As with our reconstruction work, we understand the need to ensure that any methods and solutions we develop meet the stringent requirements for presentation as evidence in the UK courts and will stand up to scrutiny by other Expert Witnesses.
Any action of the vehicle to mitigate the collision event would have an effect on the occupant’s posture and their physical position within the vehicle and its restraint system, moving them from the standard seating position (as per a crash test dummy in a physical crash test) into a location either towards or away from the standard passive safety restraints. Such pre-crash dynamics always needs considering when trying to predict and understand the movement of an occupant caused due to a collision event.
Occupant analysis using computer reconstruction
The vast majority of cases that we work on involve studying fatal collisions where there are grounds for criminal proceedings against a surviving occupant, or to determine if the sole survivor has a case to answer for.
As is often the case, traditional forensics are often unable determine who was actually driving the vehicle at the time of the accident. In collisions and vehicles with multiple occupants, DNA and fibre fusion evidence can be unreliable or unable to pin-point any individual as being the driver.
Our approach is to carryout detailed vehicle interior examinations and combine this available physical evidence to create an accurate mathematical model of the people and vehicles involved in the actual collision. We have a range of proven software tools available to us including Madymo, PC-Crash and HVE allowing us to use the most effective toolset for each case.
Utilising the MADYMO Human Body Models- the world’s leading crash safety design software – we simulate the vehicle’s occupants, in order to provide extremely accurate representations of their movements and interactions with sections of the vehicle during the collision.
Using a series of iterative techniques, we investigate whether the available physical evidence, including any markings and damage to the vehicle’s interior and the final resting positions of occupants, implicate the same driver.
The same level of detail can also be applied to pedestrians and child occupants whether in approved seating restraints or unrestrained ion the vehicle.
The advantage of being able to use numerical simulation in analysing occupant motion is that it allows us to determine what effect, if any, an alternative restraint usage would have had on the known outcome i.e. when looking at mis-use of a seatbelt, or whether the seatbelt functioned correctly.
As all cases are unique, please talk to us to understand if our unique areas of expertise can assist your on-going investigations.
We were recently able to use data collected by our high-definition laser scanner in conjunction with biofidelic Human Body Models in order to carry out an ergonomic analysis.
We were able to demonstrate in a clear and highly visual manner that the smaller of the vehicle’s two occupants would not have been able to reach the controls with the seat in the recorded position.
Contact us now on
+44 (0)1789 264 782
for more information on our services.
If you have any questions about any of our specialist engineering services including Occupant Biomechanics, Vehicle Safety Systems such as restraints and airbags, Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS), Autonomous Vehicles or 3D Data Capture and Processing, please do not hesitate to get in touch. Our knowledgeable, professional, and experienced team is always on hand to answer any of your questions.Alscot Estate, Atherstone Hill, Atherstone on Stour
Stratford Upon Avon, CV37 8NF
Tel: +44 (0) 1789 264 782
Advanced Simtech Ltd.
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Advanced Simtech is an privately owned engineering consultancy specialising in the areas of human biomechanics, vehicle safety and real world accident reconstruction.