The topic for this master thesis is road traffic accidents and risk behavior in road traffic in Grenland between 1999 and 2011. The purpose of the thesis is to investigate patterns of road accidents in Grenland and search for risk factors among killed and seriously injured casualties in traffic accidents. Furthermore this thesis will also focus on killed and seriously injured casualties between the ages of 16-25 years. This thesis will use theoretical approaches based on risk theories, related concepts, and includes a short introduction to the traffic system and the road safety visions in Norway.
The study area of is the Grenland region. Grenland consists of the municipalities Porsgrunn, Skien, Bamble, Siljan, Kragerø and Drangedal, with a population of 119.644 per 1.10.12. This thesis is limited to killed, seriously injured and injured casualties in road traffic accidents that includes private cars, scooters and motorcycles. The analysis is broken down and divided between gender, age groups and other variables. The datasets that are used in the thesis have been provided by Norwegian Public Roads Administration.
The first analyses are based on all age groups and show that the majority of killed and seriously injured casualties in traffic accidents are males between 16-25 years and 26-50 years. In this analysis the time period are divided in 1999-2004 and 2005-2011. The analysis also shows that there is more killed and seriously injured casualties in sparsely populated areas. The study show that traffic accidents more often occur on roads often combined with high speed limits and rule violation, such as drunk driving and no use of safety equipment. However for nearly all groups the analysis show that the number of killed and seriously injured casualties in road traffic accidents has decreased in the period 1999-2011.
The second analysis is based on both genders between the ages of 16-25 years (both males and females). The analysis tells us that there is a small majority of males that are killed and seriously injured outside densely populated areas. 1/3 of all casualties in this age group of were due to alcohol impaired driving. Also here there seems to be a majority of casualties injured on high-speed roads.
The thesis is limited by the statistical registration of road traffic accidents with some challenges as underreporting of casualties and absence of detailed information. We can never be sure that all accidents are being reported to the local police, and there will also occur that some categories are missing, such as use of safety equipment and use of alcohol. This thesis is only based on the provided dataset. The prevailing dataset do not offer studies of individual motorized risk perception.