The research examined various causes of traffic accidents with casualties on intercity roads in Israel. A comprehensive database was constructed for the period studied—2005 to 2009—including, among other things, road engineering features and police traffic enforcement, and a time series estimation was used. With regard to engineering features, it was found that the addition of one meter to the paved shoulder reduces the number of traffic accidents by about 15 percent and that a physical divider between lanes of opposing traffic reduces accidents by about 30 percent. In contrast, a sharp curve in a road increases the number of accidents by about 20 percent, and road work increases accidents by about 16 percent. A change of traffic law enforcement activity by police was essentially found to have no effect on the number of accidents, but this may not indicate anything about the contribution of the level of enforcement country-wide. The probability of accidents in the southern region is significantly lower than in other areas of the country, all else being equal.
Among road segments with a high risk of an accident (“red roads”), there is a greater representation of secondary roads, and there is a relatively low representation of roads in the south of the country. All of the engineering features of these “red roads” are considerably inferior compared to the other roads.
It is important to construct a comprehensive national database, which will allow further research into the causes of traffic accidents, and aid in setting policy.