Head and neck injury analysis due to fall at the aircraft entry door
Falls are one of the most common causes of injury among young children and have been recognized as a major cause of death and disability worldwide among children 1-3 years old. A characteristic of injuries among very young children is that aspects of their normal behavior, such as natural curiosity or physiologic development of their motor skills, could be associated with an increased injury risk, especially in non-friendly and new environments. It has been reported that there have been incidents when children fell from the entry stairs while boarding an airplane. The small size and unpredictable nature of children combined with the size of the gap in the handrails creates risk for children to fall. Falls have long been studied in relation to nursery equipment and playground equipment from heights less than 1-2 meters, but not where the ground is asphalt or concrete. The present study aims to assess fall-related injuries among children on a concrete the airport tarmac. Since little is known regarding the biomechanics of such falls and injury risk associated with them, computer simulation provides a valuable tool to investigate and predict injury outcomes. The validity of the model is crucial to the reliability of the outcome. In this study, a computer simulation of a child falling from a step of the stair surface onto a hard surface was analyzed for head accelerations using the MADYMO Hybrid III-3 Year Old Child dummy model. There was no crash pulse applied, gravity was used as the fall force. Automotive and aerospace companies perform tests and computer simulations in order to optimize and design safety devices in their vehicles. This study investigates the fall injury related parameters for the head and neck, as well as the influence of contact friction forces between the dummy and surface, the kinematics of the fall, and on the head and neck acceleration forces. This study may result in an increased study of passenger safety.
Thesis (M.S.)--Wichita State University, College of Engineering, Dept. of Mechanical Engineering.