San Francisco Pedestrian Injury Surveillance: Mapping, Under-Reporting, and Injury Severity in Police and Hospital Records

Police reports of severely injured pedestrians help identify hazardous traffic areas in San Francisco, but they under-report non-fatal collisions. Police agencies in San Francisco underreport nonfatal collisions, though their reports do help to identify hazardous traffic areas. In this article, researchers were determined to identify injured pedestrians who were missing from police collision reports, see what biases exist in injury reporting, and assess the utility of broad categories of police severe injury (including fatal) for mapping and analysis. Data on injured pedestrians from police collision reports listed in the Statewide Integrated Traffic Reporting System was linked with records of pedestrians treated at San Francisco General Hospital for 2000 and 2001. Bivariate statistics, logistic regression, and mapping were the techniques used for data analysis. Results indicated that police collision reports underestimated the number of injured pedestrians by 21%. Pedestrians treated at San Francisco General Hospital (SFGH) who were African-American were less likely than whites to have a police collision report. Females were more likely than males to have a police collision report. Over 70% of pedestrians deemed by the police to have a severe injury had received treatment at SFGH, regardless of how far or close a collision occurred from SFGH. The sensitivity of a police-designated severe injury (including fatal) was 69% and the specificity was 89% when compared with a known SFGH assessment. Sensitivity declined, however when pedestrians without a SFGH record were included. It is concluded that, though collision reports have demonstrated limitations, broad categories of police severity may show sufficient sensitivity to be able to map locations where numerous severe injuries occur, for timely countermeasure selection.


  • English

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01013390
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Dec 6 2005 11:28PM