Determining Crash Accountability

Determining the Causes of Motor Vehicle Crashes “Accountability” Rather Than “Causation” in Large Truck Crashes


Determining “Accountability” in Crashes
The Large Truck Crash Causation Study (LTCCS) and Motor Vehicle CCS examined over 6,000 fatal and injury crashes. Data was collected through crash reports, documents, and interviews. A critical event — vehicle action or inaction that made the crash inevitable — was coded and assigned to one vehicle involved in each crash. Conducting investigations like these is impossible for every crash. But a test conducted with a sample the LTCCS crashes found that the coding for the critical event was the same in a large majority of the cases just from examining the police accident reports. Determining the “accountability” of crashes will allow the FMCSA to better focus on unsafe truck and bus companies.


Ralph Craft | FMCSA – Retired

Ralph Craft holds a PhD in Political Science from Rutgers University. Dr. Craft has:
-Served in the United States Peace Corps in Ecuador;
-Consulted with state legislatures in on evaluation of government programs; and
-Worked as a transportation lobbyist and researcher for several associations in Washington, DC.
In 21 years with the FMCSA of the USDOT Dr. Craft:
-Published annual reports on truck and bus crash statistics;
-Initiated and managed the Large Truck Crash Causation Study and the Bus Crash Causation Study; and
-developed a methodology for assigning accountability to motor carriers for over 100,000 annual truck and bus crashes to allow FMCSA to better focus its crash countermeasures efforts on unsafe motor carriers

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Session B – San Marcos
Ralph Craft

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