Trafiksäkerhet och konjunktur: modellansatser och litteraturstudie

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Mats Wiklund
Lennart Simonsson
Örjan Hallberg
Östen Johansson

This project includes two subprojects. The objective of the first subproject has been to investigate which types of accidents are most sensitive to the state of the market and which road user groups are involved. The objective of the second subproject was to study certain conditions, such as percentage of heavy vehicles, percentage of young driving licence holders, vehicle milage per age group, etc., and to see how these covary with the state of the market as well as with the resulting number of killed and injured road users.

An overview of the statistical methods that other researchers have used and which measures of the state of the market they have included in their models is given in this report. It was concluded that unemployment was the most common economic variable, where an increase in unemployment indicates a decrease in the number of killed road users. It was then shown that part of the reduction in the number of fatalities is explained by young drivers' reducing their car use. This applies particulary to the regression in the early 1990s. There is, however, still a remaining effect of unemployment that cannot be explained by young drivers car use. An attempt to compare fatal accidents where the driver behavior has been inappropriate, such as speeding, not using safety belt or being under the influence of drugs, before and in a recession revealed a sometimes surprising similarity. In absolute numbers it seems that some risk-taking drivers may have dropped out of the traffic or changed behaviour in the recession. The number of fatal accidents with more careful drivers has however decreased by a similar degree. Why the number of fatal accidents with risk-taking and more careful drivers decreased by a similar amount, in a relative sense, is not clear.

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