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Road traffic mortality and economic uncertainty: evidence from the United States

Kanavos, Panos ORCID: 0000-0001-9518-3089 and Vandoros, Sotiris (2023) Road traffic mortality and economic uncertainty: evidence from the United States. Social Science & Medicine, 326. ISSN 0277-9536

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Identification Number: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2023.115891


Previous studies have shown that financial turbulence is associated with a short-term increase in road traffic collisions, largely due to drivers’ emotional state, distraction, sleep deprivation and alcohol consumption. In this paper we advance this debate by studying the association between economic uncertainty and road traffic mortality in the United States. We used a State-level uncertainty index and State fatalities for the period 2008–2017 and found that a one standard deviation increase in economic uncertainty is associated with an additional 0.013 monthly deaths per 100,00 people per State, on average (a 1.1% increase) - or 40.8 more monthly deaths in total nationwide. Results are robust to different model specifications. Our findings show that, similar to drink-driving, it is important to raise awareness about driving when distracted due to financial worries.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2023 The Authors
Divisions: Health Policy
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
H Social Sciences > HE Transportation and Communications
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology
Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2023 09:21
Last Modified: 26 May 2024 17:06

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