Proceedings of the 24th World International Traffic Medicine Association Congress, Qatar 2015
  • EISSN: 2223-0440


Not all fatalities in road traffic are accidents; some are suicides. Since 2010, Sweden have been presenting suicides in road traffic separately from fatalities caused by accidents. To carry out this task a method has been developed for classification of road traffic fatalities in order to determine if the fatality was caused by accident or suicide. A five-grade classification scale was developed. Grade one indicated a clear suicide and grade five a clear accident. The definition of grade one was suicide with a clear statement of the suicidal intent. Grade two indicated an almost certain suicide but the intention was based primarily on the course of event and psychosocial information of the road user. Grade three indicated that the information was not sufficient to determine whether the fatality was the result of a suicide or an accident and grade four indicated an almost certain accident. Fatalities in grade one and two are classified as suicides. Criteria for cases that are to undergo the classification process include to examine the traffic event together with knowledge of background factors, for example prior suicide attempts, indirect suicidal communication, knowledge of ongoing depression etc. From 2012, the classification has been performed with additional information from a psychosocial examination. From 2010 to 2014, a total of 128 fatalities have been classified as suicides, 46 as grade one and 82 as grade two. From 2012 to 2014, when the psychosocial information was included in the analysis, 10% of all fatalities were classified as suicides. Analysis of gender, age, collision types, influence of alcohol, use of seatbelt, time etc., has been performed. The method can be used to determine which fatalities in road traffic are caused by suicide or accident. The method can be used on all modes of transport.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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