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Accid Anal Prev. 2001 Mar;33(2):267-76.

Accident prototypical scenarios, a tool for road safety research and diagnostic studies.

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INRETS-National Transport and Safety Research Institute, Chemin de la Croix Blanche, Salon de Provence, France.


The concept of prototypical accident scenario has been used since the late 1980s in French road safety research. A prototypical scenario can be defined as a prototype of the accident process corresponding to a series of accidents which are similar in terms of the chain of facts and causal relationships found throughout the various accident stages. This concept provides a means of combining and generalising the knowledge obtained from accident case studies, based on in-depth investigation methods or on detailed analyses of police reports. Applications of this concept are developed in both the field of traffic accident research and safety studies (diagnoses) in preparation for engineering measures or local safety policies. This paper presents the prototypical scenario concept, its theoretical background, and the way it is used for safety research and studies.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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