Rollover accidents pose a serious cost to society, while they account for 10% of all passenger car accidents they cause about 20% of Harm (Harm is defined as the sum of all injured people each weighted in proportion to the outcome, as represented by the cost of the person’s most severe injury). This is primarily due to serious head and neck injuries resulting in permanent disability or death. The literature regarding neck injury in rollovers can be divided into two groups, one that attributes neck injury to significant roof crush and the vertical excursion due to the vehicle belt system. The other who subscribes to the “diving injury” and “torso augmentation” theory and conclude that roof crush is inconsequential. The Hybrid-III test dummy has been used in rollover and drop tests to support this conclusion.
This paper will show that the Hybrid-III head and neck complex is significantly stiffer and less flexible than the human neck. This lack of biofidelity means that the Hybrid-III neck cannot provide meaningful data in rollover environments.