Project: VC-COMPAT (CIC): Improvement of Vehicle Crash Compatibility Through the Development of Crash Test Procedures

Reference: S0214/VE

Last update: 08/01/2009 14:58:31


The ultimate aim of the proposed work is to develop a suite of crash test procedures, which, once implemented, in legislative and/or consumer testing will lead to an improvement in vehicle crash compatibility. An EEVC study indicates that the number of fatalities caused by car-to-truck frontal collisions would reduce by 20 to 30 percent were the truck equipped with a rigid or energy-absorbing under-run device.

The scientific and technical objectives for car-to-truck impact are to:

* develop test procedures and performance standards for energy absorbing front underrun protection systems for trucks;
* define criteria for energy absorbing front underrun protection systems for trucks;
* provide guidelines for improvement of existing legislation on rear underrun protection; and
* provide an indication of the benefits and costs of energy absorbing front and rear underrun protection systems for trucks.


The phenomenon of car-to-truck underride occurs all around the truck and the trailer. Of these three (front, rear and side) the car-to-truck front underride is the worst, mostly due to lack of geometric compatibility between car and truck. The fitting of a rear underrun device on trucks is obligatory nowadays. This has resulted in a reduction of casualties in car-to-truck rear end collisions. However, in many cases the rear underrun device has proved to be not sufficiently robust to withstand the dynamic loading from a car or not positioned well enough to interact with the main structural members of the car. Cars are usually less involved in car-to-truck side collisions. Side protection on trucks, which is also obligatory, is mainly fitted to deflect cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians.

This project aims to address these three types of truck incompatibility and improve them by defining test procedures and performance criteria to improve the present legislation and to develop future legislation in this field.


Cranfield Impact Centre Ltd
Wharley End, Cranfield, Bedfordshire, MK43 0JR
+44 (0)1234 750111

Contract details

Cost to the Department: £54,223.00

Actual start date: 01 March 2003

Actual completion date: 31 January 2008


Public deliverables for each work package of this programme are published on the APROSYS website as they become available
Author: Various
More information:

Truck / Trailer Compatibility with Cars and Related Topics from VC-COMPAT
Author: Cranfield Impact Centre Limited
Publication date: 01/10/2003
Source: Contact:
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