Bull bar standard improves pedestrian safety

24 October 2014

New bull bar standards introduced last year means pedestrians are less likely to be seriously injured in a collision, a new report reveals.
 
The report from The Centre for Automotive Safety Research at the University of Adelaide used both laboratory results and computer simulations to identify major differences between pedestrian impacts with a compliant and non-compliant bull bar.

In July last year, the Government decided that all newly manufactured light vehicles fitted with a bull bar, must comply with the Australian Standard.

Bull bars that meet the standard showed lower pedestrian head-impact speeds, reducing the severity of impact and resulting in a reduction to the risk of a serious head injury by well over 50 per cent.
 
Bull bars are primarily used in rural areas to help protect vehicles from collisions with animals and from scrub and bushes when driven off-road.

CASR Associate Professor Jeremy Woolley said it was important that fitting a bull bar did not reverse improvements that have been seen in pedestrian safety over the past decade.

“Our research shows that the adoption of the standard was a step in the right direction,” Professor Woolley said.

The Australian Automotive Aftermarket Association was also consulted about the design and outcomes of this research report.

Executive Director Stuart Charity said the AAAA supported the South Australian changes adopted in 2013, and today’s report added the need of national adoption of section 1 & 2 of the Australian Standard AS4876.1.

Further information including an animated video displaying comparison outcomes of this recent report is available at:

www.mylicence.sa.gov.au/safe-driving-tips/safer-vehicles/bull-bars\

A copy of the report is available from the CASR website: http://casr.adelaide.edu.au/

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