The Super-Human Built to Survive a Deadly Car Crash

The road can be a dangerous place. The World Health Organization reported that road injuries were amongst the top 10 causes of death worldwide in 2012. Cars have evolved faster than humans, and the speed and momentum involved in a common crash is dangerous to humans.

It only takes an impact force of around 30km/hr for a driver to become badly, or even fatally, injured. But what if humans were to evolve to survive a deadly car crash? What would we look like? How would our body’s withstand the collision?

The Transport Accident Commission of Victoria, Australia has attempted to answer these questions. They’ve created a super-human designed to survive a car crash.

Graham the Car Crash Man

Graham was designed in collaboration. Leading trauma surgeon Christian Kenfield, crash investigation expect David Logan and artist Patricia Piccinini all played a part. The goal was to create a lifelike sculpture which could withstand the momentum of a road accident.

The result was ‘Graham the Car Crash Man’- described as ‘the only person designed to survive on our roads’. Graham is intended to be something of a safety mascot. An advanced crash test dummy that can highlight the changes humans need to make to survive on the road.

How Does Graham Withstand a Collision?

Graham may not be pretty, but he is durable. His mutated features serve to protect him from fatal injury in a car crash. It’s a trade off that could certainly save him a lot of money on legal bills. After all, it takes an expert attorney to handle a car accident injury case.

The Meet Graham website allows viewers to explore each of Graham’s tactically mutated features.

His enlarged skull acts as a helmet, offering greater protection to his brain. His face is flattened, with a great deal of fatty tissue to absorb impact. The neck is a particularly fragile area in road impacts, so it has been completely removed.

His ribcage has been designed to act like an airbag. His large, barrel-like chest and sacks between his ribs are designed to absorb force and reduce his forward momentum. This acts to protect his vital organs. His joints have been given extra flexibility, to prevent them from snapping.

How to See Graham

In addition to TAC’s interactive website, people can also see Graham in person. The TAC website lists museums and galleries across Australia where people can see the project for themselves.

Graham is designed to be an educational tool as part of TAC’s Towards Zero campaign. Their intention is to create a future free of serious injuries and deaths on the road. They want to promote a safe road system to change road safety for good.

TAC are encouraging schools to take school trips to see Graham on his road trip around Australia. The Meet Graham website also offers educational tools for schools to use.

While Graham’s mutations may not get him a part in the next X-Men film, he can certainly teach the public a lot about road safety.

Emily Muelford
Emily is a British writer whose love of car culture is augmented by a fascination with both the European and American automotive markets. Her perspective is uniquely fish and chips.