In Canada, motor vehicle collisions remain a leading cause of death, hospitalizations and emergency room visits1 In 2010, motor vehicle collisions resulted in over 2,200 fatalities2, over 14,400 hospitalizations1, nearly 162,000 emergency room visits1, for a total of over 172,000 injuries.2 This in turn cost the Canadian economy $2.2 billion.1 These numbers alone do not account for the emotional burden that motor vehicle collision injuries and fatalities have on those afflicted and their families.
Who is at risk?
In Canada, there are certain groups that are at increased risk for being involved in a motor vehicle collision than others. While young people only make up 13% of licensed drivers, they account for approximately one quarter of all road-related injuries and fatalities.3 Young drivers aged 16 to 24 years of age are at a higher risk of being killed in motor vehicle collisions than any other age group.3 In addition, males are at a much higher risk of being involved in a motor vehicle collision than females.1 Other at-risk groups include older adults and those with medical conditions, such as, heart disease and cognitive disorders, such as, Alzheimer’s disease.3
Many factors contribute to motor vehicle collisions, including speed and aggression, impaired driving and distracted driving. Environmental factors, such as road infrastructure and weather conditions can also increase or decrease the likelihood of experiencing a motor vehicle collision. The good news is that many motor vehicle accidents are preventable. Parachute focuses on some of the key areas of preventable injury within motor vehicle collisions: distracted driving and speed reduction, while also targetting young adults by raising awareness regarding teen driver safety.
For more information on what can be done to prevent motor vehicle collisions, click here.
1. Parachute. (2015). The Cost of Injury in Canada. Parachute: Toronto: ON.
2. Transport Canada. (2015). Motor Vehicle Safety, National Collision Database.
3. Transport Canada. (2014). Road Safety in Canada. Retrieved from: http://www.tc.gc.ca/eng/motorvehiclesafety/tp-tp15145-1201.htm#s38