Monday, February 06, 2006

Roadway Fatalities and Speeding

BrooklynDodger(s) is irritated by blame the victim employer driven driving safety programs. So the Dodger(s) begin a series looking at data, moving toward a real public health approach.

Employer [including the Bush OSHA] propaganda exclusively targets seat belt use and drunk driving. The Dodger(s) has also advocates seat belt use and sobriety behind the well. But this campaign wastes time and money, and a diversion of attention.

The Dodger(s) frames a constellation of risk behavior deducible from the high relative risk of roadway fatality: friday and saturday night, alcohol, younger, male, no seat belt, speeding. Yes, it's risk behavior. Public health approaches would try to identify causes driving the risk behavior, and address those causes.

So here's some descriptive data. Time trends might be of some interest, but the Dodger(s) will ignore them for the moment.

Speeding was noted in 1/3 of roadway fatalities.

There's a confounding of drinking and speeding. There's a confounding of weekend nights and speeding. It's unfortunate the report doesn't consider seat belt use as well.

The Dodger(s) are not surprised that rural roads and going around curves are confounding with speeding as well, although that may be a FARS reporting phenomenon.

DOT HS 809 839

June 2005
Technical Report

Analysis of Speeding-Related
Fatal Motor Vehicle Traffic Crashes

Executive Summary

In 2002, 13,713 fatalities -- about a third of all fatalities that occurred in motor vehicle traffic
crashes were speeding-related, i.e., at least one of the drivers involved in the crash was speeding......about 40 percent of speeding-related fatal crashes occurred while negotiating a curve, while slightly less than 20 percent of non-speeding related fatal crashes occurred under similar roadway geometry... About 41 percent of drivers who were intoxicated (BAC=0.08+) were also speeding as compared to 14 percent for sober drivers. A major proportion of fatal, speeding-related single-vehicle crashes occur on rural roadways.... The western states show a higher proportion of their overall fatalities to be speeding-related as compared to the eastern states.

Between 1983 and 2002, New Jersey had the lowest overall proportion of fatalities that are
speeding-related while South Carolina had the highest such percentage.

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