In June 2022, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released an updated ruling to the Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 213. The update requires side impact testing for child restraint systems, also known as child car seats.

Previously, the FMVSS 213 only required frontal impact testing for child car seats. The new rule provides a significant enhancement of FMVSS 213. The NHTSA Administrator, Dr. Steven Cliff, explained that side impact crashes tend to cause major injuries and sometimes death in children every year. Thus, by creating additional testing requirements the NHTSA aims to increase child safety in vehicular accidents.

To meet the new test requirements, test procedures must include child specific ATDs such as the Q3s and/or CRABI. The side impact test must replicate a 30-mph collision, or T-bone accident, for compliance.

Child car seat manufacturers must comply with the new testing requirement within three years. The manufacturers will need to procure a test lab where they can conduct this form of side impact testing.

Calspan is ready to meet this sudden market demand for side impact testing. With a new sled testing facility, Calspan operates two state-of-the-art ServoSleds, a 1.0MN and 3.1MN, with industry-standard benches, ATD dummies and other advanced equipment.

Calspan’s sled testing facility is a fully integrated system where you work with their teams from concept to test completion. Their collaborative environment ensures adherence to proper test methods, use of modern equipment and customer workspaces available on site.

Calspan has performed side impact testing for customers as an add-on test for the past decade. Their teams are well qualified and experienced in aiding customers with the FMVSS 213 rule update. 

Customers can continue to trust Calspan to provide the best service for frontal and side impact sled testing to meet new NHTSA requirements.  

To learn more about Calspan’s Sled Facility and their child restraint testing capabilities, visit

Date Posted



Mobility & Safety