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Evaluation of the impact of the month of Ramadan on traffic accidents

Utku Murat Kalafat, Hakan Topacoglu, Ozlem Dikme, Ozgur Dikme, Sila Sadillioglu, Mustafa Orfi Erdede.

Background: In the Muslim society, long periods of hunger in the month of Ramadan affect physiological and psychological performance of fasting practitioners. Most of the traffic accidents are due to human factors.

Objective: To investigate the effects of the month of Ramadan on traffic accidents.

Materials and Methods: The study was carried out based on the traffic accident reports in a period of 1 year using the Turkish Statistical Institute data. In accordance with this report, the data were analyzed with respect to Ramadan and non-Ramadan months.

Result: In 2011, total of 3,835 persons were found dead and 238,074 injured in 312,878 traffic accidents. Total number of traffic accidents in Ramadan month was found to be 28,447 and that during non-Ramadan month’s average was 25,857 (p < 0.001). Statistical analysis of the number of traffic accidents within the 12 months of 2011, when used X2-test for goodness of fit, showed that the observed number of accidents was significantly higher (p < 0.001) than the expected number in June, July, August (Ramadan), and September. Death rate in Ramadan was found to be 1.5% and that in non-Ramadan months was 1.2% (p < 0.001).

Conclusion: The average number of traffic accidents was slightly higher in Ramadan than in non-Ramadan months. Also traffic accidents involving death and injury were slightly high and traffic accidents involving material damage was less. Total number of dead and injured persons was also found to be slightly high. Also, as expected, penalties due to drunk driving were found less in Ramadan.

Key words: Ramadan, traffic accident, traffic penalty

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