Center for Safety Equity in Transportation

rural • isolated • tribal • indigenous

Crashes and Injuries on Rural Roads in Alaska - Towards a Better Understanding of Rural Safety Issues Through Linked Data and Environmental Factors

  • Active

    CSET Project #: 2206

    Project Funding: UAA and Alaska DHSS

  • Start Date: September 2022

    End Date: July 2023

    Budget: $207633

Principal Investigator(s)

Nathan Belz

Vinod Vasudevan

Project Summary

The State of Alaska has a high percentage of low-volume roads and many rural communities that rely on less conventional and “non-traditional” forms of transportation from an engineering and planning perspective. Many of these communities do not have the personnel or systems to report to the standard motor vehicle crash database. However, injury information maintained by hospitals and acute care facilities has the potential to help fill these data gaps. In addition, the sparse transportation network and rural nature of Alaska presents inherent data size issues, making most statistical methods of analysis erroneous. To address these issues, this work will concentrate on nonstandard safety data such as injuries and crashes on off-highway vehicles, such as 4-wheelers and snow machines, as well as non-standard accident reporting such as hospital records as cataloged in the Alaska Trauma Registry (AKTR) and other relevant datasets. Our primary goals are to: 1) engage relevant parties needed to develop a systems-based approach and streamline the data linkage process; and 2) establish a framework and a baseline by creating a more robust and comprehensive set of transportation safety data.