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Old 09-20-2019, 12:53 PM   #1
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Front impact protection

Hi all

I would just like to ask a quick question about the impact protection usually found on a flat-nose school bus (rear engine). I know there is the argument for a dog-nose having the frame rails and engine extending past the driver.

Do flat-noses usually have a heavy crash bar or other reinforced structure under the bottom of the windscreen or other area of the front?

Thank you!
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Old 09-20-2019, 01:50 PM   #2
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The front wall is composed of several steel components which provide structural rigidity to a point but in terms of basic physics they won't provide the same degree of impact resilience or energy absorption/deflection in a flat-nosed bus as in a conventional dog-nose one. Now the frame does extend to the front bumper so if the impact is central and low enough then the frame should provide significant rigidity but alas many impacts aren't so thought out as to aim for the appropriate center of mass.
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Old 09-20-2019, 02:18 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by rt1995 View Post
Hi all

I would just like to ask a quick question about the impact protection usually found on a flat-nose school bus (rear engine). I know there is the argument for a dog-nose having the frame rails and engine extending past the driver.

Do flat-noses usually have a heavy crash bar or other reinforced structure under the bottom of the windscreen or other area of the front?

Thank you!
Watch the videos

Dognose or not, you crash at high speed, better hope your guardian angel didn't take the day off.





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Old 09-20-2019, 03:45 PM   #4
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The front wall is composed of several steel components which provide structural rigidity to a point but in terms of basic physics they won't provide the same degree of impact resilience or energy absorption/deflection in a flat-nosed bus as in a conventional dog-nose one. Now the frame does extend to the front bumper so if the impact is central and low enough then the frame should provide significant rigidity but alas many impacts aren't so thought out as to aim for the appropriate center of mass.
I suppose in the real world any impact significant enough to worry about conventional vs flat, one would be quite badly injured regardless :/

At least the frame extends to the bumper, I worked on local buses (all flat nosed) in the UK for a job and they had very little structure in the front ends other than to provide mounting for the fibreglass bodywork. Regardless, in accidents with smaller vehicles and stationary objects they stood up well and thankfully I never saw a driver badly injured in my time there.

I'll more than likely go for a flat nose for the extra useable space, although they do seem to be rarer
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Old 09-20-2019, 04:00 PM   #5
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Between the first and second one video you can see how much of an impact the driver position can expect to endure flat nosed versus dog nosed. The additional forward mass absorbs and decelerates the impact. The bus body is a steel cage but ironically the driver's seat is the most dangerous position especially in a front impact... The dashboard and steering wheel all end up in the driver's face.
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Old 09-20-2019, 04:06 PM   #6
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Most frontal collisions of a bus would not be impacting a flat wall like the demo videos. I would suspect 90% of bus accidents involve smaller vehicles that end up under the bus and causing little damage to the cockpit.
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Old 09-20-2019, 05:31 PM   #7
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Most frontal collisions of a bus would not be impacting a flat wall like the demo videos. I would suspect 90% of bus accidents involve smaller vehicles that end up under the bus and causing little damage to the cockpit.
Yep....

As far as I can recall, all of the school bus accidents I have seen have been bus vs car or pickup.

In all of those the bus driver was notably higher than the car and escaped the worst of the crash.

I have been driving buses for 25 years and feel much safer in my A3RE than in my wife's car.
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Old 09-20-2019, 05:48 PM   #8
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Yep....

As far as I can recall, all of the school bus accidents I have seen have been bus vs car or pickup.

In all of those the bus driver was notably higher than the car and escaped the worst of the crash.

I have been driving buses for 25 years and feel much safer in my A3RE than in my wife's car.
I was just browsing through PA bus accident statistics. It seems a typical year is around 4000 people involved in school bus accidents with 10% of those injured in some way and 5 killed. The 4000 includes drivers or passengers of other vehicles, and the 5 killed are always among those (PA weirdly has had a number of years recently with exactly 5 deaths in school bus accidents). I honestly wonder how many of these school bus accidents occur when the drivers have dumped their last kid and are heading back to the depot - they go like bats out of hell where I live.

I thought I read somewhere that drivers of FE and RE buses (and city buses) were more likely to be injured or killed in accidents than CE drivers, but I ca't find anything about that right now (may have just been city bus drivers, who are out in front and lower than school bus drivers).
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Old 09-20-2019, 10:45 PM   #9
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Just put a big bumper on it like this...

https://www.rigguard.com/custom.php#

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