Project: Heavy Goods Vehicle Cab Strength

Reference: S050H/VE

Last update: 18/09/2003 15:48:46


The project objective is to establish what factors mitigate injury risk to occupants of heavy duty vehicles.


By reviewing two hundred accident reports involving fatal injury to truck occupants the researchers considered options to mitigate the fatal injury. In 32% of cases seat belts alone could have prevented the fatal injury and with cab strengthening a further 9% could have been helped.

Having identified four common accident scenarios a test procedure was developed, based upon existing tests from around the world, and subsequently refined using computer modelling. Two tests to simulate rollover and frontal impact were recommended and full scale tests of three different HGV cab designs, each constructed of different materials, validated the computer simulations. A simplified cost benefit analysis showed that over a five year period the benefits outweighed the cost by 4:1.


Cranfield University
The Cranfield Centre for Logistics and Transportation, Cranfield, Bedford, MK43 OAL
01234 751122

Contract details

Cost to the Department: £286,000.00

Actual start date: 01 May 1996

Actual completion date: 31 March 1999


The Safety of heavy Goods Vehicle Cabs
Author: Cranfield Impact Centre Limited
Publication date: 01/03/1999
Source: Contact

The Safety of HGV Cabs Phase 1 Report. An Analysis of Police Records of HGV Accidents Involving at Least One HGV Occupant Fatality for the Years 1988 to 1993
Author: Cranfield Impact Centre Limited
Publication date: 01/10/1996
Source: Contact:

Summary of results

  1. The research concluded that a moderate strengthening of the HGV cab structure and the wearing of 3 point seat belts by HGV cab occupants could save up to 19 lives per year.