Demonstrating a Correlation between the Maturity of Road Safety Practices and Road Safety Incidents

  • Published: Traffic Injury Prevention, Volume 15, Issue 6, 2014
  • Authors: L. Amador, C.J. Willis
  • Date Added: 12 Feb 2016
  • Last Update: 12 Feb 2016
  • Format: pdf


To demonstrate a correlation between the maturity of a country’s road safety practices and road safety incidents


Data on a number of road injuries and fatalities for 129 countries were extracted from the United Nations Global Status on Road Safety database. These data were subdivided according to road safety incident and crash causation factors and normalised based on vehicular fleet (per 1,000 vehicles) and road network (per metre of paved road). A road safety maturity model was developed based on an adaptation of the concept of process maturity modelling. Plots of normalised road safety performance of the 129 countries against their maturity scores for each road safety practices as well as an aggregation of the road safety practices were developed.

Key Findings:

  • The maturity of countries with respect to 10 road safety practices was determined through the identification of indicators recorded in the United Nations Global Status of Road Safety Database.

  • The analysis confirmed that there is a correlation between the maturity of road safety practices and road safety incidents.

  • Road safety practices associated with enforcement of speed limits and promotion of alternative modes are the most significant road safety practices toward which mature countries have concentrated their efforts, resulting in a lower frequency of fatalities, injury rates, and property damage collisions.

  • The report argue that the use of gross domestic product (GDP) as a predictor of road safety incidents suffers from the presumptive assumption that the only criterion that matters is national income, therefore erroneously predicting that richer countries all perform approximately the same in fatalities and that developing nations are at various stages, with high variability and uncertainty in prediction.

  • It is proposed that an aggregation of individual maturity scores from safety practices will lead to a better indicator for policy because it connects fatalities/injuries with intrinsic factors for which policies can be oriented.


Policy, Effectiveness


Different approach to understanding effectiveness of road safety policies across a large number of countries.