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J Safety Res. 2013 Feb;44:45-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jsr.2012.10.013. Epub 2012 Nov 20.

Narrative text analysis to identify technologies to prevent motor vehicle crashes: examples from military vehicles.

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Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins Center for Injury Research and Policy, Department of Health Policy and Management, 624 N Broadway, Baltimore MD 21205, USA.



The purpose of this research is to describe the leading circumstances of military vehicle crashes to guide prioritization and implementation of crash avoidance and/or warning technologies.


A descriptive study using narrative text analysis on 3,944 military vehicle crash narratives. Crash data on drivers, from 2001 to 2006, were assembled from the U.S. Army Combat Readiness/Safety Center. Reviewers collected information on the circumstances of crashes and determined if vehicle technology could have prevented the crash.


Nearly 98% of the crashes were nonfatal; 63% occurred in the U.S. and 24% in Iraq. Among crash events where the direction of the impact was recorded, 32% were to the front of the vehicle and 16% involved a vehicle being rear-ended. Rollovers were mentioned in 20% of the narratives. Technology was determined to have the potential to prevent 26% of the crashes, with the forward collision warning system, rear end collision avoidance, emergency brake assistance, and rollover stability control system likely to have the greatest impacts.


Some technologies available for civilian vehicles may prevent certain military crash circumstances.


The results of this research are significant in light of ongoing global military operations that rely on military vehicles. Improving the preventive technology featured on military vehicles may be an effective strategy to reduce the occurrence of military crashes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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