Paper presented at the 33rd Annual Southern African Transport Conference 7-10 July 2014 "Leading Transport into the Future", CSIR International Convention Centre, Pretoria, South Africa.
The Cacadu District Municipality (CDM) in the Eastern Cape Province has been involved in collation of accident report forms from the South African Police Service (SAPS) and capturing the data in a database. The aim of the project was to identify hazardous locations and the conceptualisation of appropriate treatments/interventions for improving road safety on the road network of the Cacadu District Municipality.
The paper presents the data collection process and hazardous location identification methodology as well as the outcome of the project. It highlights the problems encountered, shortcomings of the accident reporting system and the way forward for a meaningful road accident database.
The study concluded that the road safety management process cannot be implemented until a number of challenges have been addressed such as incomplete accident reporting; data quality and accuracy which include aspects such as typographic error in data entry, imprecise entry as in the use of general terms to describe a location, incorrect entry of road names, level of accident severity, vehicle type, incorrect training and subjectivity – where data collection relies on opinions of individuals.
The crash data quality problem is therefore not unique to the Cacadu District Municipality but seems to be a national problem. Sinclair, for example, reviewed the national accident database and concluded that the quality of the data is questionable.
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