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Tracking Fatal Crashes with Fires

Car fire.

Tracking Crashes with Fires.
Rank Ordered List of Vehicle Fleets in Fatal Crashes with Fires.

The list above is based on data from NHTSA's Fatality Analysis Reporting System over the period, 1982 through 2007. The list gives number of fatal crashes by fleet which killed an occupant as well as the number of those crashes in which a fire (or explosion) of any kind occurred. By comparison, fires occurred in 3.8 percent of crashed vehicles with an occupant death in all identifiable, model year 1981-2008, light duty passenger vehicles in FARS during the period studied.

The list is ordered by a statistical criterion based on the Poisson distribution that tests the likelihood of an expected number of events, given the number of events that actually occurred. This technique is related to one described in the paper found at: Injury Prevention, April 2004, 10:88-92, by R.A. Whitfield and Alice K. Whitfield. This methodology has been criticized by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

We have also performed a statistical analysis of fire occurrence controlling for vehicle age, vehicle type, driver age, time of crash, posted roadway speed limit, and crash type. This logistic regression analysis supports a conclusion that the unusual numbers of fire-related crashes for these nine fleets, given a fatal crash that killed an occupant, are not fully explained by these factors. Further engineering and statistical review is warranted to help reduce the numbers of fatal crashes with fires in these fleets.

If you have questions about our research, please to send us an email.

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