Implications from the study of Road Transport Accident Costs

Where presented/published

Transport Knowledge Conference, Wellington, Dec 2022

ViaStrada investigated the costs of “transport-related accidents” on roads as part of the recent MoT Domestic Transport Costs & Charges (DTCC) study. The study calculated estimates of total, average and marginal (social) costs, based on willingness-to-pay (WTP) to avoid pain, grief and suffering from these incidents. Motor vehicle crash costs totalled $5.65 billion annually, while costs associated with accidents only involving non-motorised users, such as pedestrian falls, were estimated at a further $830 million annually. The marginal cost analysis found that congestion effects in urban and motorway environments, where the relative increase in crashes with VKT increase is dampened by the reduced cost per crash due to lower speeds, led to negative marginal costs.

The analysis in this work identified several potential questions and issues for further consideration, including:

  • identifying the true costs in NZ for non-motorised user accidents
  • reviewing the relative breakdown of crash cost components (loss of life, medical, legal, vehicle damage, etc)
  • the lack of useful crash data split by truck types
  • inconsistencies around the distinction between urban and rural crashes
  • the implications of marginal crash costs that may be negative

This presentation summarised the road safety analysis undertaken and explored the implications for future investigation in this area. Glen Koorey presented on these findings at the 2022 Transport Knowledge Conference in Wellington.

A copy of the presentation can be found here, and the session was also video recorded here.

Glen Koorey
Director – Principal Transportation Engineer & Transportation Planner
Megan Gregory (née Fowler)
Principal Transportation Engineer