ARSRPE Conference Paper Database

Age as a risk factor in pedestrian traffic casualties

Loo, Becky


This paper makes use of a linked hospital database, the Road Casualty Information System (RoCIS), to examine age as a risk factor in pedestrian traffic casualties. The database consisted of 4,290 traffic casualty records admitted to two major hospitals in Hong Kong in 2004. Among these records, there were 897 pedestrian traffic casualties (PTC) and 3,367 non-pedestrian traffic casualties (NPTC). Statistically, there was no significant age difference among the two groups. However, the severity of injury differed significantly at the 0.05 level. In order to conduct a more in-depth analysis of the age factor in affecting the severity of injuries, the pedestrian traffic casualties were divided into four age groups. A set of five injury severity variables were calculated for different age groups. For PTC, all injury severity indicators increased by age. The picture was less clear for NPTC. Theoretically, there are many confounding factors, such as gender, vehicle class and injury patterns, to injury severity. The relationships of these risk factors with the five injury severity variables are analyzed by logistic regression. Overall, the results clearly point to the importance of age as a risk factor. In all models, the elderly (≥65 years) were having higher chances of serious injury and fatality. The odd ratios imply that elderly PTC were about twice more likely to die and to suffer from serious injury than younger ones. In addition, multiple injuries and heavy vehicles also increased the chance of severe injury among PTC.