Pedestrian Fatalities Resulting from Train-Person Collisions.

Traffic injury prevention

PubMedID: 24761944

Sousa S, Santos L, Dinis-Oliveira RJ, Magalhães T, Santos A. Pedestrian Fatalities Resulting from Train-Person Collisions. Traffic Inj Prev. 2014;0.
ABSTRACT Objective: Train-person collisions have a significant impact in our society, due to its negative economic and psychological effects. This work aims to study fatalities resulting from train-person collisions in Portugal. Methods: A retrospective study was conducted based on the analysis of autopsy reports related to train-person fatalities performed in the North Branch of the National Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences. Results: Suicide was responsible for most of the cases, and males were more involved in train-person collisions than females. Victims, between 40-59 years old, were found to be involved in a high percentage (39%) of the cases, and people older than 65 accounted for a significant percentage (40%) of the accidents. No seasonality was observed in suicide cases, but a decrease in accident numbers was registered in summer. Regarding weekday and time of day, afternoon and out of rush hour was the time when most suicides were observed, while accidents did not showed a specific weekday or time of day, except for rush hours, in which they were more frequent. Alcohol positive blood analysis accounting for 25% of the cases. Conclusions: Differences from other European studies were found, which may be related to the different cultures of the countries/regions, as well as to the differences of the railway systems. More extensive studies must be performed, in order to develop strategies to prevent train-person collisions.