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article image'The Driving Dead': Cadavers used as crash test dummies in Spain

By Anne Sewell     Oct 25, 2013 in Technology
Engineers at a research center in northern Spain have admitted that they are one of six centers in the world to use human cadavers in car crash test simulations. Reportedly it is cheaper than using the expensive crash test dummies.
Researchers at the MotorLand Technology Park in Alcañiz said said that it was necessary to use human corpses, as the crash test dummies cost €150,000 ($207,000) a piece.
The media in Aragon is reporting that previously monkeys and pigs were used to assess tissue damage caused by serious car crashes. However, Spain's Technologies and Systems for Automotive Safety (TESSA) reported on Tuesday that human bodies provide scientists with more accurate results.
TESSA's research center, which is part of the University of Zaragoza, apparently now has its own morgue in which to store and prepare the corpses for the crash tests.
According to TESSA most of the cadavers are made available for the car safety tests when Spain's medical faculties were finished with them.
Reportedly human corpses were first used in crash test simulations back in 1930 at Detroit’s Wayne State University. However, the ethical and moral issues of their use prevailed.
Also the fact that the cadavers mostly belonged to older people, who are not really the age demographic usually involved in car crashes, led to the creation of what is now known as the crash test dummy.
However, possibly due to the economic crisis and budget cuts, human cadavers are now being used yet again.
More about Spain, crash test dummies, Corpse, Cadavers, research center
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