Acute injuries resulting from accidents involvingpowered mobility devices (PMDs)—Developmentand outcomes of PMD-related accidents in Sweden
Journal article, 2019
Powered mobility devices (PMDs) are commonly used as aids for older people andpeople with disabilities, subgroups of vulnarable road users (VRUs) who are rarely noted in trafficsafety contexts. However, the problem of accidents involving PMD drivers has been reported inmany countries where these vehicles have become increasingly popular.The aim of this study is to extract and analyze national PMD-related accident and injury datareported to the Swedish Traffic Accident Data Acquisition (STRADA) database. The results will pro-vide valuable insight into the risks and obstacles that PMD drivers are exposed to in the trafficenvironment and may contribute to improving the mobility of this group in the long term.
The current study is based on data from 743 accidents and 998 persons. An analysiswas performed on a subset of data (N¼301) in order to investigate the development of accidentsover a period of 10 years. Thereafter, each accident in the whole data set was registered as eithersingle (N¼427) or collision (N¼315).
The results show that there was a 3-fold increase in the number of PMD-related accidentsreported to STRADA during the period 2007–2016.With regard to single accidents, collisions, as well as fatalities, the injury statistics were dominatedby males. Single accidents were more common than collisions (N¼427 andN¼316, respectively)and the level of injury sustained in each type of accident is on par.The vast majority of single accidents resulted in the PMD driver impacting the ground (87%), dueto either PMD turnover (71%) or the driver falling out of the PMD (16%). The reason for many ofthe single accidents was a difference in ground level (34%, typically a curb).Cars, trucks, or buses were involved in 67% of collision events; these occured predominantly atjunctions or intersections (70%).Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS) 3þinjuries were dominated by hip and head injuries in both singleaccidents and collision events.
The present study shows that further research on PMD accidents is required, withregard to both single accidents and collision events. To ensure that appropriate decisions aremade, future work should follow up on injury trends and further improve the quality of PDM-related accident data. Improved vehicle stability and design, increased usage of safety equipment,proper training programs, effective maintenance services, and development of a supporting infra-structure would contribute to increased safety for PMD drivers.
Powered mobility devices(PMDs)
vulnerableroad users (VRUs)
Anna K Carlsson
Stiftelsen Chalmers Industriteknik
University of Gothenburg
Traffic Injury Prevention
1538-9588 (ISSN) 1538-957X (eISSN)
Areas of Advance
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Learning and teaching