Should we consider preventing traffic incidents?

Rising traffic congestion in urban areas has resulted in an increased focus on the economic, financial and travel reliability impacts. Understanding traffic incident causation and then an increased emphasis on prevention, has the potential to significantly reduce the number and impact of traffic incidents.

It is instructive to look at the extensive research in the causes of crashes and the development of a body of knowledge on traffic safety countermeasures and injury prevention. There is little published research into causes of traffic incidents.

Anecdotally causes of traffic incidents include such things as inattention, careless or reckless driving behaviour, excessive speed, poor judgement, impairment (alcohol, fatigue, drugs etc), distraction, poor loading of goods vehicles, insufficient fuel, unroadworthy vehicles, road works and adverse weather.

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