A Novel Approach to Assessing Road-Curve Crash Severity

  • Andry Rakotonirainy, Samantha Chen, Bridie Scott-Parker, Seng Wai Loke, Shonali Krishnaswamy
  • Journal of Transportation Safety & Security, September 2014, Taylor & Francis
  • DOI: 10.1080/19439962.2014.959585

A Novel Approach to Assessing Road-Curve Crash Severity

What is it about?

We know that curves in roads are associated with increased risk of injury and fatality to vehicle occupants if they are involved in a crash, but we don’t understand fully the factors that contribute to this increased crash risk and the increased risk of injury within this infrastructure type. We text-mined the insurance claim records from a major insurer in Queensland, Australia, relating to 3,434 crashes which occurred on a road curve during the period 1 January 2003 to 31 December 2005.

Why is it important?

In addition to previously-recognised contributing factors such as the time of day, the weather, and traffic congestion, we found a number of other factors which contribute to crashes such as using a mobile telephone, over steering on the curve, and trees in close proximity to the actual curve infrastructure itself.


Dr Bridie Scott-Parker
University of the Sunshine Coast

Currently, interventions for road curves rely on information gathered from sources such as Queensland Police and the Department of Transport & Main Roads regarding crashes which occur on road curves. However, this information is limited by the nature of the template upon which information is collected. Insurance claim records actually provide a wealth of data which can be mined and which can identify previously-unrealised and unidentified factors which contribute to a road curve crash. It is important to note, however, that the insurance claim records are likely to be provided by a driver who may be trying to place themselves in the best light to the insurer. Not withstanding this limitation, this novel methodology still provides unique information which can guide effective intervention in road curve crashes.

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The following have contributed to this page: Dr Bridie Scott-Parker