Acute Injuries Resulting from Accidents Involving Powered Mobility Devices (PMDs)—Development and Outcomes of PMD-Related Accidents in Sweden

Powered mobility devices (PMDs) are commonly used as aids for older people and people with disabilities, subgroups of vulnerable road users (VRUs) who are rarely noted in traffic safety contexts. However, the problem of accidents involving PMD drivers has been reported in many countries where these vehicles have become increasingly popular. The aim of this study is to extract and analyze national PMD-related accident and injury data reported to the Swedish Traffic Accident Data Acquisition (STRADA) database. The results will provide valuable insight into the risks and obstacles that PMD drivers are exposed to in the traffic environment 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 analysis was performed on a subset of data (N = 301) in order to investigate the development of accidents over a period of 10 years. Thereafter, each accident in the whole data set was registered as either single (N = 427) or collision (N = 315). The results show that there was a 3-fold increase in the number of PMD-related accidents reported to STRADA during the period 2007–2016. With regard to single accidents, collisions, as well as fatalities, the injury statistics were dominated by males. Single accidents were more common than collisions (N = 427 and N = 316, 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%), due to either PMD turnover (71%) or the driver falling out of the PMD (16%). The reason for many of the single accidents was a difference in ground level (34%, typically a curb). Cars, trucks, or buses were involved in 67% of collision events; these occurred predominantly at junctions or intersections (70%). Abbreviated Injury Scale (AIS) 3+ injuries were dominated by hip and head injuries in both single accidents and collision events. The present study shows that further research on PMD accidents is required, with regard to both single accidents and collision events. To ensure that appropriate decisions are made, 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 infrastructure would contribute to increased safety for PMD drivers.


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  • Accession Number: 01712262
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 21 2019 3:01PM