Next Up: WC18 Restraint Systems Standards
Now that you’re up to date on standards WC19 (wheelchairs) and
WC20 (seating), keep an eye in your rearview mirror for WC18.
It’s described by the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center
(RERC) on Wheelchair Transportation Safety as “a revised and
updated version of SAE J2249, Wheelchair Tiedown and Occupant
Restraint Systems for Use in Motor Vehicles.”
The RERC says WC18 will be published as part of the ANSI/RESNA Wheelchair Standards volume 4, Wheelchairs& Transportation.
“It is the goal of this standard to encourage the design, testing,
installation, and use of wheelchair tiedown and occupant restraint
systems (WTORS) that will provide effective wheelchair securement
and occupant restraint for forward-facing occupants in frontal
collisions, comparable to that provided by equipment installed
by the vehicle manufacturer that must comply with federal motor
vehicle safety standards,” the RERC says. “The primary purpose
is to reduce the likelihood of serious injuries to wheelchair-seated
occupants involved in frontal vehicle crashes. However, it is anticipated
that use of equipment that complies with this standard will
also result in increased driver and passenger safety and security
during normal travel.”
WC18 will apply to WTORS used with forward-facing, wheelchair-seated children and adults who are passengers in privately
owned vehicles and to wheelchair-seated passengers in public
transportation, including school transportation.
A March story in School Transportation News said, “WC18 centers
on lap/shoulder belts that have vehicle-anchored pelvic/lap belts
and how they must disconnect the diagonal shoulder portion of
the belt restraint from the pelvic portion of the belt by using the
standard connector-to-pin-bushing anchorage. Or, the belts must
include anchorage ends of the pelvic belt that can be easily inserted
through openings in the wheelchairs.”
This article originally appeared in the November 2011 issue of Mobility Management.