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The effect of state regulations on truck-crash fatalities.


To improve traffic safety, states limit truck length and weight, and some set lower speed limits for trucks than for other vehicles. We examined the impact of truck-specific restrictions and general traffic-safety policies on fatality rates from crashes involving large trucks. We used state-level data from 1991 to 2005 with a cross-sectional time-series model that controlled for several policy measures. We found that higher speed limits for cars and trucks contributed to higher fatality rates, but differential speed limits by vehicle type had no significant impact. Truck-length limitations reduced fatalities in crashes involving large trucks. Our model estimates suggested that if all states had adopted a speed limit of 55 miles per hour for all vehicles in 2005, an additional 561 fatalities would have been averted.


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    Department of Political Science, 300 College Park, University of Dayton, Dayton, OH 45469-1425, USA.


    American journal of public health 99:3 2009 Mar pg 408-15


    Accidents, Traffic
    Automobile Driving
    Cross-Sectional Studies
    Government Regulation
    Health Policy
    Public Health
    Regression Analysis
    United States

    Pub Type(s)

    Journal Article



    PubMed ID