Statistical Analysis of Motor Vehicle Crashes in Texas




Sheng, Erxuan

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Texas is a leading state in terms of the numbers of crashed and crash fatalities. Four studies to examine the characteristics of crashes in Texas and the factors that contribute to crashes and crash severity were conducted. The detailed crash data were obtained from the Texas Crash Records Information System (CRIS) and the National Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) database maintained by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). The first study included a detailed analysis of all crashes in Texas for the six-year period from 2010 through 2015 was performed to understand the characteristics of crashes how the severity of crashes is related to different factors. It was found that the number of crashes vary with the time of the day, day of the month, also vary significantly from year to year. The county-level distribution of crashes showed significantly higher numbers in urban counties, especially Harris and Bexar counties. When the crashes were normalized by the population, the results indicated that some rural counties have the highest crash risks. Generally, female drivers were involved in far less crashes than male drivers while young drivers were more likely to be involved in crashed than old drivers. A linear regression model was developed in the second study to identify the impact of different factors on daily crashes in Bexar County, Texas. Crash data for 2013 was used in the analysis. The regression model showed that the daily crashes were influenced by the day of the week, month of the year, and school days. Many of the factors such as rainfall occurrence and amount and major sport events were not found to be significant. A logistic regression model was developed in the third study to identify the factors that impact crash severity. Several variables were related to crash severity including light condition, intersection, curve type, and driver ethnicity, age, and gender. The regression model included all crashes that occurred in Texas during the 10-year period from 2006 through the end of 2015. Only a few factors were found to have no impact on crash severity. The fourth study included a comprehensive analysis of the fatal crashes caused by rain in Texas from 1994 to 2014. The rain-related fatal crash factors categorized and examined at the state and county levels. The rain-related crash factors were classified as environmental-related, roadway-related, and driver-related. Almost all of the factors had an impact on rain-related fatal crashes at different levels.


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Civil and Environmental Engineering