Factors Influencing Crash Frequency on Colombian Rural Roads

  • Andrea Arévalo-Támara Santo Tomás University, Bogotá, Colombia
  • Mauricio Orozco-Fontalvo Universidad Militar Nueva Granada, Bogotá, Colombia
  • Víctor Cantillo Universidad del Norte, Barranquilla, Colombia
Keywords: traffic crashes, crash frequency, Colombian rural roads, Negative Binomial model, Zero-inflated model, generalized linear mixed model, traffic safety


Traffic crashes in Colombia have become a public health problem causing about 7,000 deaths and 45,000 severe injuries per year. Around 40% of these events occur on rural roads, taking note that the vulnerable users (pedestrians, motorcyclists, cyclists) account for the largest percentage of the victims. The objective of this research is to identify the factors that influence the frequency of crashes, including the singular orography of the country. For this purpose, we estimated Negative Binomial (Poisson-gamma) regression, Zero-inflated model, and generalized the linear mixed model, thus developing a comparative analysis of results in the Colombian context. The data used in the study came from the official sources regarding records about crashes with consequences; that is, with the occurrence of fatalities or injuries on the Colombian roads. For collecting the highway characteristics, an in-field inventory was conducted, gathering information about both infrastructure and operational parameters in more than three thousand kilometres of the national network. The events were geo-referenced, with registries of vehicles, involved victims, and their condition. The results suggest that highways in flat terrain have higher crash frequency than highways in rolling or mountainous terrain. Besides, the presence of pedestrians, the existence of a median and the density of intersections per kilometre also increase the probability of crashes. Meanwhile, roads with shoulders and wide lanes have lower crash frequency. Specific interventions in the infrastructure and control for reducing crashes risk attending the modelling results have been suggested.

Author Biographies

Andrea Arévalo-Támara, Santo Tomás University, Bogotá, Colombia

Andrea Arévalo-Támara received the Bs. Eng. degree in civil engineering in 2011 from Universidad Fransico de Paula Santander, Colombia; the MSc in Civil engineering in 2015 from Universidad del Norte, Colombia. She is an assistant professor at Santo Tomás University, Colombia and has developed several road safety projects around the country. Her research interests include: traffic accidents, road safety policies, accident modeling and sustainable transport.

Mauricio Orozco-Fontalvo, Universidad Militar Nueva Granada, Bogotá, Colombia

Mauricio Orozco received his BS Engineering in civil engineering in 2013 and MSc in, Civil engineering in 2015 from the Universidad del Norte, Colombia. He is an associate professor at the Universidad Militar Nueva Granada. He has also been working in other topics such as transportation planning and road safety.

Víctor Cantillo, Universidad del Norte, Barranquilla, Colombia

V. Cantillo, received the Bs. Eng. degree in Civil Engineering in 1987, from Universidad del Norte, Colombia; the MSc. in Traffic and Transport Engineering in 1990, from Universidad del Cauca, Colombia and the Ph.D. degree in Engineering Sciences (Transport), in 2004, from Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, Chile. He is an associate professor at Universidad del Norte, Colombia since 1990. He is the head of the Transport Research Group - TRANVIA. His research interests include: transport planning, transport economics, transport modeling, and logistics. He has also been working on other topics such as education in engineering, econometrics and construction materials.


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How to Cite
Arévalo-Támara A, Orozco-Fontalvo M, Cantillo V. Factors Influencing Crash Frequency on Colombian Rural Roads. PROMET [Internet]. 2020Jul.9 [cited 2020Aug.14];32(4):449-60. Available from: http://traffic.fpz.hr/index.php/PROMTT/article/view/3385