Car editor Niek Schenk answers: ‘Tests are being tested with a collision diagonally from behind (on the corner of the car), but full on the back is indeed not part of the regular crash tests. Choices are made because of the costs. Relatively more often people sit in the front of a car than in the back. And rear-end collisions are generally less fatal than collisions reaching the car’s interior from elsewhere. That’s because this type of collision usually takes place at low driving speeds.’
‘The infamous whiplash often occurs here: a strain of the neck muscle with possible long-term complications. For this reason, EuroNCAP, the European organization that performs most crash tests, has introduced a separate whiplash test for seats and headrests. But this test (performed on a sled) does not yet answer the question of the extent to which the crumple zone in the back of the car offers protection. I therefore agree with you: more attention should be paid to the occupants in the back seat.’
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