EVALUATION OF HEAD AND FACE INJURY POTENTIAL OF CURRENT AIRLINE SEATS DURING CRASH DECELERATIONS
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION OKLAHOMA CITY OK CIVIL AEROMEDICAL INST
Pagination or Media Count:
A large percentage of deaths in commercial-airline crashes is produced as the body and lower limbs flail around the seat belt. According to a previous study, a 10-foot-diameter sphere of clear area would be necessary to prevent a person from striking some portion of his body against surrounding structures. This study is concerned primarily with head impacts that may occur against most portions of the seats. Thirty-five impact studies were made with an instrumented dummy head against various portions of eight different makes of airline seats to determine the g time-force parameters of metal deformation and seat break-over. Until recently these data could not be interpreted in terms of head injury or unconsciousness because data on human tolerance to impact against deformable structures were not available however, a recently published study presents detailed data concerning these tolerances. These data are used here to determine the injury potential of the eight seats studied. Applying the earlier data to the seat-impact studies, 30 of these impacts would have produced fatal head injuries, 80 would have caused facial fractures, 97 would have rendered the passenger unconscious, and only 3 would have caused no injury or unconsciousness.