Author(s): Larsen L, Kines P
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Abstract To enhance traffic safety, a multidisciplinary Road Accident Investigation Team was established in Denmark for a 2-year trial period. The objective was to conduct in-depth investigations of specific types of accidents, and to identify effective preventive measures. The team consisted of a road engineer, a vehicle inspector, a police superintendent, a psychologist and a physician. Seventeen serious head-on collisions as well as 17 left-turn collisions were analysed. In collecting data, police reports were supplemented by the team's investigation of accident sites and vehicles involved, and interviews were carried out with the involved road users and witnesses. The drivers, to whom the accident factors were primarily related in the head-on collisions, were characterised by their conscious risk-taking behaviour. They were all males; several of them were under age 40 and had earlier traffic and/or drug convictions. The main accident factors were excessive speed, drunk driving and driving under the influence of illegal drugs. In the left-turn accidents, the most common accident factors were attention errors, and it was also noted that elderly drivers ( > 74) were over-represented. The synergy effect of working as a multidisciplinary team proved fruitful. It resulted in a more precise knowledge of the road accident circumstances and of contributing factors leading up to the accidents. Due to the great demand on resources, only a limited number of accidents could be analysed, but the results provide a basis for further and more targeted research.
This article was published in Accid Anal Prev
and referenced in Journal of Ergonomics