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Sources of Data


Please list any and all sources of data you can think of about road injury.

Newspapers can be:

  1. a data source (because they will publish information on individual collisions) as well as
  2. reporting on other data sources.

So you may list newspaper (in the sense of an individual report) but then think about the actual data they might use for other articles.

You may like to visit the Interesting Injury Headline Database to give yourself some ideas.

Now that you have considered this, here is a list of common sources:

Official Sources (from the Government)

1. "STATs19"  - This is the name given to the database of Police-collected information on road collisions. In theory, if any vehicle (motorised or not) is involved in a collision on the public highway that results in an injury this event should be reported to the police. This is the "definitive" source of information on road injury in Great Britain. Whether it is perfect or not, the Government's understanding of injury, how we compare with other countries, how injuries change over time and how different parts of Great Britain compare with each other is all based on these data. Because of it's importance in policy and performance, we will say a little more about these data later on. 

2. HES (Hospital Episode Statistics) - If an injury is serious enough to warrant admission to hospital, it will be recorded in these data. There is a degree of fine detail on the cause of the injury (road user type) and various demographics but nothing about the geographical location of the collision.

3. Ambulance Records / A&E records - There are data available from these services which provides yet another version of what is happening on our roads.

4. Fire and Rescue Information - Some data will be recorded on the collisions to which F&R Services are called.

5. Coroners Courts, and Death Registrations - There are number of other places where information about fatal road injuries get recorded.

Para-Official Sources

1. Insurance company records - One of the headlines in the database referred to a press release given by the company "Sheila's Wheels". This is another version of what happens on our roads.

2. Fleet managers records - Health and Safety Legislation will encourage fleet managers to be more careful in recording collisions involving their employees driving on business.

Other Sources

1. Surveys - There are numerous large government surveys, such as the ALSPAC survey (carried out in Avon) and the Health Survey for England which ask people questions about their involvement in road collisions. Some of these surveys can be very informal and badly designed.

Information about Road Behaviours

There is also a wealth of information to tell us what is going on around Britain's roads.   This includes:

  1. Records of offences (such as speeding and drink driving  - both of these are mentioned in the Headline database - neither concern injury directly)
  2. Records of road usage - such as the number of vehicles registered, the amount of traffic, the speed of traffic, the characteristics of vehicles

Please continue with the tasks in order to learn more about each of the following:

(a) The definitive dataset (the police collected "STATs19" data)

(b) Surveys

(c) Offences

(d) Vehicle manufacture information

Task Discussion