Crashed Vehicles Helping to Save Lives

For many years MIRA’s Safety Development Team have carried out pioneering research and development in order to enhance vehicle safety.

Crashed Vehicles Helping to Save Lives

As a result of this work, MIRA’s engineers crash test a large number of vehicles at their Nuneaton based Highway Safety and Protection of Infrastructure Test Centre. The facility is a purpose built outdoor crash laboratory designed for crash testing vehicles up to 120mph, which can also cater for heavy vehicles including lorries and military platforms.
As soon as the dust has settled after a crash test, each vehicle is meticulously analysed before being written off. Some are then taken away for scrap and safe disposal, while others are donated by MIRA to the emergency services for training purposes.

MIRA has supported fire and rescue teams across the local area for a number of years including The West Midlands Fire Service, as well as teams in Leicestershire, Staffordshire and Warwickshire. As a result the success of this important initiative has spread to include Bristol’s Severn Park Fire & Rescue Training Centre which trains emergency teams in the South West of England.
The first vehicle, a VW Passat, was donated to Severn Park in December 2014, with a further two cars due for delivery in January.

Alistair Crooks – Head of the Highway Safety and Protection of Infrastructure Test Centre said,

“We’re really proud to support the emergency services across the UK and we’re grateful for the hard work that they put in to save peoples’ lives on our roads. By working together we are helping to improve the safety of both vehicle occupants as well as pedestrians.”

Roger Farrant – Watch Manager, Severn Park Fire & Rescue Training Centre commented,

“Without MIRA’s support, we would have to teach techniques using older non-damaged cars, which do not react in the same way as damaged vehicles.”

The modern cars supplied by MIRA are a valuable training tool, as they contain high strength steels, advanced airbag restraint systems and the varied polymers used in the interior and under the bonnet of a car now used in EuroNCAP rated vehicles. These present a realistic challenge to the cutting equipment and techniques employed by fire and rescue teams during their training.

Many of the teams also visit MIRA’s site to enhance and validate their procedures, and to train regular as well as volunteer fire fighters how to remove occupants from crashed vehicles in variety of emergency scenarios, sometimes involving actors with simulated injuries.