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Accid Anal Prev. 2010 Nov;42(6):2007-12. doi: 10.1016/j.aap.2010.06.010. Epub 2010 Jul 13.

Female involvement in U.S. nonfatal crashes under a three-level hierarchical crash model.

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Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation, Impaired-Driving Center, PIRE, 11720 Beltsville Dr., Suite 900, Calverton, MD 20705-3111, USA.


Men have long held the lead in motor-vehicle crashes; however, research indicates that women are closing the gap. To further investigate this problem, we applied a hierarchical model to investigate female involvement in fatal crashes in the United States. The hierarchical model recognizes that decisions at higher levels affect the decisions at lower levels. At the top level, the model assumes that the driver's condition (e.g., inattention, fatigue, impairment) affects the next level (e.g., speeding or other failures to obey traffic laws), which subsequently affects the basic maneuvering skills (i.e., the lowest level) were either nonexistent, or largely explained by gender differences in alcohol consumption. We found that although female involvement in skill-related crashes was not different from that of males, females were more likely than males to apply wrong maneuvers when speeding was involved. We also found that the most important contributing factor to gender differences in nonfatal crashes can be traced back to gender-based differences in alcohol consumption.

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