Crash Test Dummies are packing on the pounds in order to reflect obese Americans. The dummies are adding on the weight because they will better represent the increasing waistlines and bigger rear ends of numerous Americans. Producer Humanetics created the new crash test dummies after research reports showed that overweight drivers were almost 80 percent more likely to perish if they were in car crashes.
Dummies have conventionally been sculpted based on a person weighing around 168 pounds and having a fit body mass index (BMI). However, some of the new models will weigh around 275 pounds and have a BMI of 35 to better imitate growing waistlines. Having a BMI over the number 30 is thought to be morbidly obese stated the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Air bags, seat belts and other security features have all been built and meant for people who are thinner and do not fit bigger people the same way. Normally, the adequate fit should have a person in a close position with their behinds against the back part of the seat and the safety belt snug against the pelvis. When an individual is obese, he or she has more quantity around the middle area and a bigger rear which causes the person to come out of position easier. He or she sits closer to the front and the belt is not able to clasp around the pelvis as effortlessly.
Crash test dummies have been saving lives and also providing vital information about how human bodies react during times of car accidents. However, they have been designed to characterize people who are of normal size weight. Now with nearly 70 percent of Americans considered as being either overweight or obese, the death threat for obese individuals in automobiles is a grave problem that has to be faced even though fatal car wrecks are at momentous lows. There has to be a way to make vehicles safer for everyone, regardless of their body size.
The information that was used to produce the new crash test dummies also specified that overweight and obese female drivers experienced double the chance of becoming a casualty when equated with overweight or obese males. The bigger dummies are estimated to be accessible to companies sometime in 2015.
Humanetics also has been working on crash test dummies that are age applicable as well in order to better replicate the elderly population. This is because as people get older, they have a higher chance of getting injured in a car accident. Individuals who are age 50 and older have a 20 percent higher chance of getting seriously hurt, while those over the age of 80 have a 40 percent greater chance.
However, crash test dummies themselves might become a thing of the past, as computer modeling might end up replacing numerous body types and provide researchers with evidence that dummies are not able to. Either way, the swelling waistlines of the present population and the aged Baby Boomer generation will issue and trials for automakers as they attempt to keep automobiles safe.
By Kimberly Ruble
Photo by Macul 2009 – Flickr License