Modeling Injury Outcomes of Crashes Involving Heavy Vehicles on Texas Highways

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Concern related to crashes that involve large trucks has increased in Texas recently because of the potential economic impacts and level of injury severity that can be sustained. However, detailed studies on large truck crashes that highlight the contributing factors leading to injury severity have not been conducted in Texas, especially for its Interstate system. The contributing factors related to injury severity were analyzed with Texas crash data based on a discrete outcome-based model that accounts for possible unobserved heterogeneity related to human, vehicle, and road–environment factors. A random parameter logit (i.e., mixed logit) model was estimated to predict the likelihood of five standard injury severity scales commonly used in the Crash Records Information System in Texas: fatal, incapacitating, nonincapacitating, possible, and none (i.e., property damage only). Estimation results indicated that the level of injury severity outcomes was highly influenced by several complex interactions between factors and that the effects of some factors could vary across observations. The contributing factors include driver demographics, traffic flow, roadway geometric features, land use, time characteristics, weather, and lighting conditions.

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Transportation Research Record, v. 2388, issue 1, p. 28-36