The scope of this study was to assess if there is a problem caused by car ‘A’ pillar obscuration in the real world and, if so, to start to quantify the size of that problem. This was achieved by using real world crash data to construct 3-D visualisations that would provide a graphical illustration of the obscuration caused by the car ‘A’ pillar. The real world crash data used in the study was obtained from the On The Spot (OTS) crash study.
The work to date highlights that car ‘A’ pillar obscuration could be a contributory factor in some road traffic crashes. However, there is rarely only one factor that contributes to an accident, and ‘A’ pillar obscuration is no exception to this.
The report found there is not enough evidence at this stage to suggest changes to the current legislation. However, the EC legislation currently assesses cars based on a 50th percentile male and the visualisations have suggested consideration could be given to smaller and larger drivers.
The study recommends that further work could elaborate on the findings of this report via analysis of the OTS Phase 2 data, an enhanced ‘A’ pillar data collection phase and through driver simulator trials to test the findings and recreate accident scenarios with volunteers running the simulation.

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