CR 19: Effects of seat belts and head restraints on neck injury (1980)

While there is strong evidence that seat belt wearing reduces the incidence of severe injuries to vehicle occupants involved in crashes, there is also evidence that the use of lap/sash seat belts increases minor and moderate neck injuries in crashes. In recent years, head restraints have been installed in the front seats of cars with the ain of reducing minor neck injuries ("whiplash"), principally in rear impacts where impacts where their frequency of occurrence is highest. This study examined the interaction between static lap/sash belt use and the availability of head restraints installed under Australian Design Rule 22 (ADR 22), in terms of their effect on neck injury. ADR 22 allowed either fixed or fully height adjustable head restraints, and many of the adjustable type are not set in the correct position in practice. There was no statistically significant evidence for such an interaction.

Type: Research and Analysis Report

Sub Type: Consultant Report

Author(s): M H Cameron

Topics: Head, Occ protection, Seat belts

Publication Date: 01/05/81