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Americans are getting bigger, and so are the crash-test dummies!

The CDC calculates that about 35% of the adult male population is obese, and that’s something Humanetics is taking into consideration when making their crash-test dummies. Humanetics, the largest U.S. maker of instrumented crash dummies, has just developed a new 6’2″ dummy that weighs 273 pounds to reflect America’s growing waistlines. This big guy will soon join the family of sophisticated crash dummies currently being used in crash tests.

“As we put on weight, it’s not evenly distributed,” explains Chris O’Connor, CEO of Humanetics. “Most of us get a lot thicker in the middle. One of the problems, as a driver, is that that puts you out of position for the seat belt. You’re sitting farther forward in the seat, and the belt isn’t pinning down your pelvis but running across your belly, and that isn’t good.” Mr. O’Conner also stated that “Studies show that obese drivers are 78 percent more likely to die in a car crash.”

An NHTSA spokesperson said they know about the new dummy, “but it’s too soon to speculate on if it would ever be added to our program or family of dummies.”

Photo: Humanetics

 

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