Accident Analysis and Prevention 39 (2007) 491–499
Errors and violations in relation to motorcyclists’ crash risk Mark A. Elliott a,∗ , Christopher J. Baughan b , Barry F. Sexton b a
Department of Psychology, University of Strathclyde, United Kingdom b Transport Research Laboratory (TRL), United Kingdom
Received 28 July 2006; received in revised form 25 August 2006; accepted 30 August 2006
Abstract This study was conducted to: (a) develop a questionnaire that reliably measures the behaviour of motorcyclists and (b) test which types of behaviour predict motorcyclists’ crash risk. A Motorcycle Rider Behaviour Questionnaire (MRBQ), consisting of 43 items to measure the self-reported frequency of speciﬁc riding behaviours, was developed and administered to a sample of motorcyclists (N = 8666). Principal components analysis revealed a 5-factor solution (trafﬁc errors, control errors, speed violations, performance of stunts and use of safety equipment). Generalised linear modelling showed that, while controlling for the effects of age, experience and annual mileage, trafﬁc errors were the main predictors of crash risk. For crashes in which respondents accepted some degree of blame, control errors and speed violations were also signiﬁcant predictors of crash risk. Implications of the ﬁndings are discussed in relation to deciding which countermeasures may be most effective at reducing motorcycle casualty rates. © 2006 Mark A. Elliott. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Keywords: Motorcycle Rider Behaviour Questionnaire (MRBQ); Errors; Violations; Motorcycle; Crash risk
1. Introduction Statistics for Great Britain show that motorcyclists are more at risk of being killed or injured in road trafﬁc crash than any other type of vehicle users. In 2004, there were over 550 motorcycle riders (including moped riders) killed in road crashes, 6281 killed or seriously injured (KSI) and over 24,300 involved in recorded injury (all severities) crashes (Department for Transport, 2005). In order to reduce these casualty rates, it is important to gain an understanding of the ways in which motorcycle crashes happen. In thinking about the different factors involved in motorcycle crashes, it is useful to consider motorcycling as a system involving three elements: (a) a machine element (i.e., the motorcycle), (b) an environmental element (e.g., trafﬁc conditions, road type and conditions, weather conditions) and (c) a human element (i.e., the rider1 ). Extensive research in road safety has provided a great deal of knowledge about risk factors associated with the ﬁrst two of these elements (for reviews see
Corresponding author at: Department of Psychology, University of Strathclyde, 40 George Street, Glasgow, G1 1QE, United Kingdom. Tel.: +44 141 548 2700; fax: +44 141 548 4001. E-mail address: melliott@TRL.co.uk (M.A. Elliott). 1 We acknowledge that car drivers have a role to play in road trafﬁc crashes involving motorcyclists. However, this study focuses solely on the motorcycle rider since a great deal is already known about car driver behaviour.
Refs. Elliott et al., 2003; Huang and Preston, 2004). However, relatively little is known about how the human element can be tackled to reduce motorcyclists’ crash risk. A number of studies have demonstrated that the risk of a motorcyclist having a crash increases with exposure and falls with age and riding experience (e.g., Chesham et al., 1993; Lin et al., 2003; Sexton et al., 2004; Taylor and Lockwood, 1990). However, variables such as age, experience and exposure provide limited information about how to improve rider safety. Understanding how rider behaviour is related to crash risk is potentially more useful because behaviour is potentially amenable to change via road safety interventions. Several studies have investigated the relation between motorcycle riding behaviours and crash risk. Riding behaviours that have been found to increase crash risk include riding...
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