Income, Income Inequality and the “Hidden Epidemic” of Traffic Fatalities
AbstractFew, if any, epidemics responsible for 20 million severe injuries and/or deaths each year, globally, receive less public attention than do traffic accidents truly making them a “hidden epidemic”. Worse yet, the epidemic is growing as evidenced by World Health Organization data which show deaths from traffic accidents increasing by 20 percent between 1990 and 2002. In this paper we examine how a country’s stage of development and its distribution of income affect its traffic fatality rate. In our theoretical analysis, we show that traffic fatalities should have a nonlinear relationship with a country’s level of per capita income while being a decreasing function of income equality. We test our model’s predictions by evaluating data from 79 countries between 1970 and 2000, taking into account other factors that influence traffic fatalities like the motorization rate, health care networks, education, and alcohol consumption and find strong evidence of the theoretical model’s predictions. Specifically, the empirical results indicate that traffic fatalities are negatively related to income equality throughout its range and also are negatively related to per capita income, above a threshold of about $11,500.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by Department of Economics, College of Business, Florida Atlantic University in its series Working Papers with number 05002.
Length: 43 pages
Date of creation: Nov 2005
Date of revision: Aug 2006
Vulnerable road users; traffic safety interventions; per capita income; income inequality;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- O57 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economywide Country Studies - - - Comparative Studies of Countries
- I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2006-11-18 (All new papers)
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Hongyi Li & Lyn Squire & Tao Zhang & Heng-fu Zou, 1999.
"A Data Set on Income Distribution,"
CEMA Working Papers
575, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
- Chaloupka, Frank J & Saffer, Henry & Grossman, Michael, 1993.
"Alcohol-Control Policies and Motor-Vehicle Fatalities,"
The Journal of Legal Studies,
University of Chicago Press, vol. 22(1), pages 161-86, January.
- Frank J. Chaloupka & Henry Saffer & Michael Grossman, 1993. "Alcohol Control Policies and Motor Vehicle Fatalities," NBER Working Papers 3831, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Deaton, A., 2001.
"Health, Inequality, and Economic Development,"
200, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Development Studies.
- Angus Deaton, 2002. "Health, inequality, and economic development," Working Papers 270, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Center for Health and Wellbeing..
- Angus Deaton, 2001. "Health, Inequality, and Economic Development," NBER Working Papers 8318, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Angus Deaton, 2002. "Health, inequality, and economic development," Working Papers 209, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Research Program in Development Studies..
- Brent D. Mast & Bruce L. Benson & David W. Rasmussen, 1999. "Beer Taxation and Alcohol-Related Traffic Fatalities," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 66(2), pages 214-249, October.
- Ruhm, Christopher J., 1996.
"Alcohol policies and highway vehicle fatalities,"
Journal of Health Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 15(4), pages 435-454, August.
- Waldmann, Robert J, 1992. "Income Distribution and Infant Mortality," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 107(4), pages 1283-302, November.
- Jennifer M. Mellor & Jeffrey Milyo, 1999. "Re-Examining the Evidence of an Ecological Association between Income Inequality and Health," Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University 9922, Department of Economics, Tufts University.
- Kopits, Elizabeth & Cropper, Maureen, 2003. "Traffic fatalities and economic growth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3035, The World Bank.
- Alma Cohen & Liran Einav, 2003. "The Effects of Mandatory Seat Belt Laws on Driving Behavior and Traffic Fatalities," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(4), pages 828-843, November.
- McCarthy, Patrick S, 1996. "Market Price and Income Elasticities of New Vehicles Demand," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 78(3), pages 543-47, August.
- Benson, Bruce L. & Rasmussen, David W. & Mast, Brent D., 1999. "Deterring drunk driving fatalities: an economics of crime perspective1," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 19(2), pages 205-225, June.
- Klaus Deininger & Lyn Squire, 1996.
"A New Data Set Measuring Income Inequality,"
CEMA Working Papers
512, China Economics and Management Academy, Central University of Finance and Economics.
- Dee, Thomas S., 1999. "State alcohol policies, teen drinking and traffic fatalities," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(2), pages 289-315, May.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Vadym Volosovych) The email address of this maintainer does not seem to be valid anymore. Please ask Vadym Volosovych to update the entry or send us the correct address.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.