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Traffic related injuries are an increasing problem throughout the world, affecting both old industrial and new industrialized countries. A recent Harvard study shows that these injuries will be ranked third in terms of global burden of disease in coming decades, unless promotion and control of safety are given a greater priority.
Hans von Holst, Åke Nygren, Åke E Andersson

The Status of Traffic Safety in the United States

Thank you, Dr. Mackay, for your kind introduction, and a thank you to Dr. von Holst, Dr. Nygren, Mr. Wittlov and honored guests, for the invitation to represent the United States at this conference. We have recently made a fundamental shift in how we approach traffic safety in the United States and I hope that our recent successes can illustrate how change can sometimes overcome existing barriers to success.
Ricardo Martinez

Brain Anatomy, Impairments and Driving

Brain damage can cause impairments in functions relevant for driving, such as perception, attention, judgment, decision making and motor functions. Thus, the question arises whether anatomical structures in the brain can be related to aspects of the driving task. If these relationships would be known, one might predict the problems a particular patient will meet in traffic, on the basis of his lesion.
Adriaan H. van Zomeren, Frederiec K. Withaar, Wiebo H. Brouwer

Perceived Risk and Driving Behavior: Lessons for Improving Traffic Safety in Emerging Market Countries

Very often the risks of driving are expressed in terms of the total number of deaths that occur yearly as the result of motor vehicle operation. Yet, despite the thousands of people who die each year in automobiles in the U.S. alone, driving behavior seems relatively unresponsive to statistical portrayals of risk. Research in risk perception suggests that this apparent unresponsiveness is rooted in the manner by which risks are psychologically evaluated and judged. In general, perceptions of controlability of a hazard are a prime factor in personal assessments of its riskiness. Unfortunately, drivers appear to have an exaggerated sense of their personal control over driving situations and hazard potential, leaving them unrealistically optimistic about their chances of avoiding harm. However, emerging market countries seeking to develop better motor-vehicle risk management are cautious about drawing too heavily upon risk perception research conducted in industrialized countries with mature risk management institutions — risk as a concept appears highly conditioned on the cultural context within which it is experienced. Thus, emerging nations are encouraged to develop risk management approaches within their own cultural matrix, relying on a base of research stimulated by cross-cultural collaboration.
Donald G. MacGregor, Paul Slovic

Behavior, Technology and Traffic Safety

The importance of highway traffic safety has increased significantly in the 90 ’s. This has been reflected in changes in driver behavior, governmental action, and utilization of new research and advance technology in the vehicles and road system. The interaction between these areas is complex, but it appears that the changes are initiated not by the technology but rather by the road users norms and beliefs concerning the importance of safety over other values. This paper deals with the impact of five specific issues that are important to the interaction between behavior and technology and its effects on safety.
Technology changes faster than people’s adaptation to it, and there is a need to consider the behavioral impacts and prepare for them, before the safety benefits can be realized.
Increased congestion on the streets and highways changes driver behavior in two ways. First, driving becomes more aggressive as people become frustrated by lost time. Second, people incorporate more and more non-driving — mostly work — tasks into the time behind the wheel, thereby raising further concerns about safety.
Behavioral safety guidelines are lagging behind emerging technologies of safety and convenience. This implies the need for a new approach to safety assurance, one that would include human factors considerations throughout the design process.
The driving population is aging and the older drivers need special accommodation. License revocation based on medical impairments has not proven successful for either safety or mobility, and more positive approaches are offered.
The vehicle-roadway-user system has become part of the global village, and this is a strong impetus for global standardization that should include vehicle displays and controls, roadway guidance systems, and minimum driver licensing requirements.
David Shinar, Ben Gurion

New Technologies and Behavior — Problem or Cure?

If one is to believe some of the promoters of intelligent transport systems (ITS), telematics applications are some kind of wonder cure for all the evils caused by transport. Intelligent transport systems will reduce travel time, secure dramatic reductions in pollution, reduce the cost of freight operations and at the same time achieve dramatic improvements in traffic safety. ERTICO in its vision for Europe and VERTIS in its goals for Japan set remarkably similar targets for accident reduction. ERTICO predicts that ITS will make a major contribution to reducing road fatalities over twenty years by 50%, while VERTIS has a goal that ITS should cut fatal accidents on Japanese roads by half over thirty years (8, 19).
Oliver Carsten

Built-in Social / Administrative Mechanism for Traffic Safety

The peak of road accident deaths in Japan was marked in 1970 when the annual fatalities (within 24 hours after the accidents) reached 16,765.
Masaki Koshi

Behavior and Risk Typology: Disaggregation of Accident Statistics and Behavior

In road safety research and practice, it is customary to consider accidents in relation to exposure, for example, when accident rates are computed on the basis of number of accidents per head of population, number of registered vehicles or vehicle kilometers. Such measures are typically referred to as accident risk. These measures mean different things and are useful for different purposes. For example, road fatalities per head of population describes the total cost of road traffic to society whereas fatalities per vehicle kilometers describes the safety of a road traffic system for example in comparison to other transport modes. The former typically increases with motorization while the latter improves with motorization (eg. 20). The former emphasizes avoiding death in traffic as such while the latter rather considers deaths as one output in the optimization of the road traffic system. As in the other big public health problems, we should start from looking at deaths per population, or absolute number of people killed in traffic in a country. What matters is how many people are killed or seriously injured in traffic.
Heikki Summala

Traffic Education Strategy

In most motorised countries, road crashes are a major cause of death and injury, and the single major cause of death and injury to young people. In motorised and particularly developing countries, the risk to unprotected and vulnerable road users (pedestrians, cyclists and motor cyclists) is unacceptably high.
Peter Makeham

An Evolutionary Perspective on the Prevention of Youthful Risk-Taking: The Case For Classical Conditioning

I will deal with three issues in this paper:
Why do young people — and especially young men — take needless risks?
What forces might be powerful enough to attenuate youthful risk-taking?
What can classical conditioning techniques — in particular fear conditioning — contribute to injury prevention?
Victor Nell

Alcohol, Fatigue, Inattention and Other Immediate Causes of Accidents and Their Significance for an Effective Accident Prevention Strategy

The agenda for this presentation is the following. First, we will discuss some relatively recent findings on factors that may be counted among the most salient immediate causes of accidents: alcohol, fatigue and inattention. Second, we will examine the trend towards a reduction in the proportion of drivers with high levels of alcohol in their blood relative to all drivers killed in road accidents. Can the reduction be attributed to legislation and enforcement?
Gerald J.S. Wilde

Brain Injury After Traffic Accidents

According to the emergency medical service system in Japan especially since the latter half of 1970’s, most of the patients with sudden and critical illness or with severe trauma including severe head injury are transported to the critical care centers, for the Japanese Ministry of Health and Welfare has carried out the policy about the establishment of one emergency and critical care center per one million population these twenty years. The authors explain the emergency medical service system and critical care centers peculiar to Japan at first and refers to intrinsic or extrinsic diseases with acute onset which are treated there. And then the biomechanics of severe head injury is commented and the strategy in the authors’ critical care centers is mentioned thereafter.
Tohru Aruga, Tetsuya Sakamoto, Katsuhiko Sugimoto, Yasufumi Miyake

Cultural Lag in Safety in Indonesia: A Case in Yogyakarta

High motorisation resulting from high economic growth in Indonesia has brought rapid growth in road transport especially in cities in Java. At the same time, agricultural based culture is shifting towards industrialisation which demands more transport services. In this rapid change, the traffic safety aspect doesn’t seem to keep in pace with such high development in road transport. In the last few years, the number of accidents involving larger number of victims are increasing, although it is not reflected in our national statistics. It is believed that one of the root problems has been the existence of a cultural lag of drivers and road users which is unable to keep pace with the impacts of high growth of vehicles and road system and their interactions.
This paper aims at looking into some cultural elements in Javanese traditions in relation to road and traffic aspects which may have detrimental effects in road safety. Some elements investigated include: behavioral aspects of drivers, human factors in driving, driving licence system with special case of Yogyakarta-the centre of Javanese culture.
Some results from 50 respondents involved in accidents in 1997 show the dominance of human factor in traffic accident. It is also evident that the poor education system and the ease of obtaining driving licence have made the attitude of drivers to traditional slow-non motorised traffic operation remain operate in a fast moving motorised traffic which in result making the traffic operation so dangerously.
Heru Sutomo

Design of Driving Environment, Driving Behavior, and Traffic Safety

The primal causes of traffic accidents are due to drive error such as insufficient watching or poor driving technique, however it is also a fact that there exists a safer driving environment where drivers make fewer mistakes and/or the drivers’ mistakes do not necessarily cause accidents. Drivers operate their cars by watching their surrounding conditions and processing information continually. If we call such surrounding conditions the “driving environment”, then prevention measures for traffic accidents can be understood as the actions that form a safer driving environment. In this environment it is important to clarify the relationship between the driving environment and the level of traffic safety. Effective traffic safety measures can be launched when we grasped the process of how the change of traffic environment affects the safety level of traffic.
Hideyuki Kita

The Electronic Driving License Saves Lifes When Used as an Ignition Key

In July 1996 a joint European driving license format and design was introduced but it was also at the ministerial meeting in November 1995 decided that the new license should have a chip to be introduced at a later time. The advantage with a chip built into a plastic card is that this chip in addition to the printed license information may contain additional information about the bearer if that is desirable. The chip information may increase the security of the card and for instance have a coded fingerprint stored. This will make it very difficult to use the card if it is in the wrong hands.
Fred Goldberg

Ordered Probit Model of the Speed Selection Behavior: Results Based on a Korean Micro Data

Many studies on drivers’ speed selection behavior have been reported in the last decade. Most previous studies have, however, concentrated on the relationship between drivers’ speed selection and road/vehicle characteristics without considering other important factors such as personal characteristics and drivers’ perception of speed limit. This paper analyzes Korean drivers’ speed selection behavior by taking into account such factors as trip characteristics in addition to personal, vehicular, and attitudinal factors. Speed selection behavior is measured by a categorical measure over speed limit, and an ordered probit model is used to econometrically estimate the speed behavior equation. The results are as follows: i) male drivers with higher income tend to drive faster, and experienced drivers drive more higher speed than others ii) vehicles with more safety features such as ABS and Air-bag go slower than vehicles with less safety features iii) trip distance and frequency user of the road are important factors for speed selection behavior, iv) perceived speed limit on road and expectation of being caught for speeding are an important factors for driving behavior.
Kyungwoo Kang

Normal Behavior and Traffic Safety: Violations, Errors, Lapses and Crashes

This paper summarises recent work by the Manchester Driver Behavior Research Group. In a number of national questionnaire studies in the UK we have identified a threefold typology of aberrant driving behaviors, distinguishing
  • Lapses (e.g., You try to pull away from the traffic lights in the wrong gear),
  • Errors (e.g., You fail to see a’ stop’ or ‘Give Way’ sign) and
  • Violations (e.g., speeding, tailgating, running red lights).
This work has been replicated in Australia, Sweden and China, and data is currently being collected in Canada, USA, Mexico, Brazil, Holland and Finland. In the UK, drivers’ scores on Violations, not Errors or Lapses, are statistically associated with their three-year crash involvement, both retrospectively and prospectively, and for both Active Crashes (“I hit ”) and Passive Crashes (“I was hit by ”).
Violations are more frequent amongst young drivers, male drivers, and high mileage drivers.
  • Active Crashes are best predicted by Violation score plus driver gender.
  • Passive Crashes are best predicted by exposure (annual mileage) plus Violation score.
The consequences of these findings for road safety countermeasures will be briefly discussed, noting the need to change drivers’ attitudes.
Stephen G Stradling, Dianne Parker, Timo Lajunen, Michelle L Meadows, Cheng Qiu Xiel

Young People Drunk-Driving: Process and Outcome Evaluation of Preventive Actions

“Winds and clouds, life is just a mirage; pour some wine, come what may…”
Jean-Pascal Assailly

Behavior and Road Safety: A Multidimensional Issue — Implications for Road Safety Programmes in Developing Countries

Road traffic injuries (RTIs) have been increasing at a phenomenal pace in less industrialized countries like India contributing for significant mortality, morbidity and disability. Indian cities have been registering an annual increase of 10–20% RTIs from year to year. Road user’s behavior play a critical role in the complex interwoven process of interaction on the roads as driving and road usage by motorized and non-motorized users, respectively, is a complex, dynamic, unstructured task with considerable variations at regional and local levels. In Bangalore, human behavior among RTIs was examined by using ‘Verbal Reports’ in a series of subjects registered in hospital emergency rooms, ‘Observational Studies’, along with epidemiological surveys and police reports. Two wheeler occupants (34%), pedestrians (31%) and pedal-cyclists (10%) were the major injured groups. A number of behavioral factors were identified depending on — categories of road users, health conditions, type of vehicles used and road conditions. It was noticed that behaviors related to pedestrian road usage, ‘risk taking behavior’ of youth, alcohol usage (16%), driving skills, non-compliance with road safety aspects, and interactions on the road were some of the major hazardous factors. Four major behavioral issues related to ‘speed’, ‘alcohol’, ‘refusal to use protective equipment like helmets’ and ‘respecting road rules’ were responsible for more than 75% of road traffic injuries.
Research in the area of behavior and road safety has primarily focussed on identifying, measuring and intervening with road users in relation to roads and the products being used. This has also been a limitation as society and governments view this in an individualistic approach rather than as a systems approach to road safety. Hence, there is a need to examine this issue from a wider perspective of society and community as a whole along with its individual partners in totality as political will, policymakers understanding, professionals involvement, positive role of media, product safety and public participation are key elements to improve road safety in developing countries. Identifying and ‘Rewarding positive behaviors’ while ‘Restricting negative behaviors’ have not been considered by authorities. The need for behavioral research and its incorporation into safety design of roads and vehicles along with behavior modification of road users is vital to promote road safety in developing countries.
G. Gururaj

Imaging Techniques in the Evaluation of Behavior After Traffic Accidents

Recently, the imaging techniques of brain are extremely progressing.
Tarumi Yamaki, Toshihiro Higuchi, Yoshio Imahori, Yoshihiro Iwamoto, Masahito Fujimoto

The Effects of Targeted Safety Campaign and Enforcement Programs in Hulu Langat District, Malaysia

This paper presents the effects of a targeted safety program recently carried out in the district of Hulu Langat, Selangor Malaysia. In this program, a combined approach of targeted campaign on motorcycle safety followed by police enforcement was carried out. The campaign materials for motorcycle safety were developed based on in-depth research and they were pretested at a number of factories whereby high riding population was recorded. Accident data were compiled in a computerized accident recording system (CARS) and appropriate intervention models were developed. From the models developed, it was found that the number of motorcycle fatalities dropped by more than a third following the intervention. In contrast, there has been an increased in fatality in the control area during the same period.
Radin Umar

Automobile Safety Devices and Offsetting Behavior: A Japanese Experience

The attempts to improve automobile safety by installation of various safety devices on automobile may be offset by drivers’ optimal response to the devices. Most aspects of risk taking and insurance-related decisions by drivers depend on the relations between the choice of individual precautions and the choice of automobile safety levels. This article indicates that the changes in safety levels have ambiguous effects upon changes in rates of fatal accidents since more safety of cars dilutes the incentive to exercise care. An empirical data set observing traffic accidents on Japanese highways imply some saving of auto occupants’ lives by safety devices, the supplemental restraint air bag system, at the expense of more nonfatal accidents; these findings are consistent with drivers’ offsetting behavior to automobile safety regulation.
Kiyoshi Kobayashi, Eizo Hideshima

Driving Attitudes and Skills as a Function of Experience

Novice drivers’ accident risk reduce rapidly at least for the first 3 years (3, 6, 7, 11). This is because they get accustomed to driving on the road, improve their driving skill and knowledge, and get matured with age.
Tsuneo Matsuura

Motorization in Developing Countries Implications for Public and Private Sectors

This paper was presented at the Fourth Annual Conference on Transportation, Traffic Safety and Health. October 21–22, 1998. Tokyo, Japan. The findings, interpretations, and conclusions expressed in this paper are entirely of the author’s. They do not necessarily represent the views of the World Bank, its Executive Directors, or the countries they represent. The author would like to acknowledge his appreciation for the able research assistance provided by Ely sa Coles.
Zmarak Shalizi


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