In recent years, technologies greatly improved the safety of cars, lessening your chances of getting injured or killed in a car accident. These safety technologies are not foolproof, though. The human body still faces biological and physiological limitations. However, in Australia, a group of car crash specialists, an artist, and a doctor imagined what it would be like if this were not the case. They created a “mutant superhuman” with a body that could theoretically survive a high-speed car crash.
Meet Graham, the only human who could survive a high-speed car accident
The name of the mutant superhuman is Graham. He is the brainchild of Australia’s Transport Accident Commission (TAC), as reported by Mirror. Body features of Graham include:
- No neck
- Recessed eyes and nose
- “Crumple zones” in his skull
- Airbags between each rib
- Hoof-like legs with additional knees and joints
The hoof-like legs with the added knees and joints can “bend in all directions to quickly move out of the way of oncoming traffic.” According to the TAC, all of these unique body features are what it would take for a human to “survive a major collision.”
Graham looks like something that you might find in a sci-fi movie. However, he’s a sculpture, created from a unique collaboration. The crash test specialists at the TAC commissioned artist Patricia Piccinini to create Graham, with assistance from Melbourne Hospital trauma surgeon Christian Kenfield.
Transportation officials created the mutant superhuman to show the ‘importance of designing safer roadways’
The purpose of creating the mutant superhuman is to “highlight the fragility of the human body when traveling in cars.” Officials at the TAC also “hope Graham will help people understand the importance of designing safer roadways.” TAC chief executive Joe Calafiore stated, “Cars have evolved a lot faster than humans, and Graham helps us understand why we need to improve every aspect of our roads system to protect ourselves from our own mistakes.”
It doesn’t take much for someone to get injured or killed in a car crash. This is especially the case for pedestrians and side-impact collisions. We detailed this in one of our earlier articles about speeding and car crash deaths. Evolution is a long and slow process. Human bodies are not designed to withstand the impact of a high-speed crash. A human body can only take so much when enduring the brute force of a collision. With Graham, the TAC shows what it would take for a human to evolve to the point in which it could survive.
“What if our bodies could cope with the impact of a crash? What might we look like? Our aim is to explore this with Graham and remind people of how vulnerable our bodies really are by showing them what we might look like if we were built to survive a crash on our roads. Although our bodies will never look like Graham’s, there’s a safe system in place that can help protect us in much the same way.”– Australia Transport Accident Commission (TAC)
Crash-surviving mutant superhuman costs $200K Australian dollars (around $142K USD)
To create the mutant superhuman sculpture, Piccinini used silicone and human hair. The artist stated, “This is an artwork, and it needs to connect with the audience on an emotional level while still communicating some very serious ideas. The idea is to stimulate conversation and questions rather than tell people what to think or feel.”
Piccinini spent six months creating Graham — at a cost of $200,000 Australian dollars (or around $142,000 USD). This might seem like a waste of money to some people. However, when considering the considerable loss of life, as well as money, that dangerous driving behavior causes each year, the cost might be worth it. Perhaps, the mutant superhuman will cause people such as yourself to think about the fragility of the human body, and be more careful with your driving behavior.