In most African countries, road safety policies are mainly focused on the human factor. In order to inform policy makers about the role of other factors in road mortality, this study aims to analyse the road and environmental factors associated with traffic mortalities in Benin. This is a cross-sectional study using secondary data from road accidents collected by the police between 2008 and 2015. The database included the circumstances of the crashes as well as data on the road infrastructure, the environment and the vehicles involved. A multiple logistic regression analysis identified the environmental factors predicting fatalities. Over the study period 42,846 traffic crashes were reported by the police in Benin of which 1,043 were fatal, that is a proportion of fatal crashes of 2.4% (95% CI [2.3, 2.6]). The risk factors for mortality were rural areas (aOR =2.78, 95% CI [2.38, 3.24]), straight road sections (aOR =1.32, 95% CI [1.07, 1.63]), market days and festival days, (aOR =1.57, 95% CI [1.02, 2.41]) and (aOR =1.57, 95% CI [1.18, 2.10]) respectively. Lighting levels and weather conditions were not significantly associated with road mortalities. This study confirms the contribution of environmental factors to road mortalities in Benin. Involving communities in raising awareness on road safety in rural areas and strengthening road control systems, especially on market and festival days, could help limit the number of road deaths.
Key words: Mortality, traffic crashes, environment factor.
AOR, Adjusted Odd Ratio; BAAC, Bulletin d’Analyse des Accidents Constatés; CI, Confidence Interval; CNSR, Centre National de Sécurité Routière; INSAE, Institut National de Statistique et d'Analyse Economique; MIT, Ministère des Infrastructures et des Transports; OR, Odd Ratio; WHO, World Health Organization.
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