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 Table of Contents 
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 7  |  Page : 3652-3656  

Epidemiological profile and mapping geographical distribution of road traffic accidents reported to a tertiary care hospital, Mangaluru using quantum geographic information system (QGIS)


1 Department of Community Medicine, Yenepoya Medical College, Mangaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Yenepoya Medical College, Mangaluru, Karnataka, India

Date of Submission01-Feb-2020
Date of Decision13-Mar-2020
Date of Acceptance21-Mar-2020
Date of Web Publication30-Jul-2020

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Poonam R Naik
Professor and Head, Department of Community Medicine, Yenepoya Medical College, Mangaluru, Karnataka
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_190_20

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  Abstract 


Background: The worldwide annual average of road traffic accident (RTA) is approximately 7,00,000 and out of that 10% occur in India. It is estimated that in India, by 2020 RTA would have its fatal effect on about 5,50,000 people annually. This study was conducted to describe the epidemiological profile and spatial distribution of RTAs using quantum geographic information system (QGIS) software reported to a tertiary care hospital in Mangaluru. Methods: It was a record based descriptive study conducted in a tertiary care hospital of Mangaluru. The complete enumeration of all RTAs reported to Yenepoya Medical College Hospital (YMCH) during January 2018 to June 2018 was followed. QGIS software was used to depict spatial distribution of the road traffic accident on open street map. Results: A total of 180 cases of RTA was reported to the hospital during the study period, of which 86.1% were males. The mean age of the study participants was 33.99 years. The lower limb was the most common site of injury (48.3%) and fractures were the most common type of injury (55.6%). As per the type of RTA majority (55.6%) was motorbike accidents and drivers (47.8%) were the most common RTA victims. Predominantly RTAs occurred during evening hours of the day (40%). QGIS plotting revealed clustering of RTAs in Dakshina Kannada district, North Karnataka and neighboring districts of Kerala. Conclusion: QGIS can be used at the health care system level as an important tool to plan preventive measures and early intervention measures at the site of RTA.

Keywords: Epidemiological profile, QGIS, RTA, spatial distribution


How to cite this article:
Shaira H, Naik PR, Pracheth R, Nirgude AS, Nandy S, Hiba M M, Karthika S. Epidemiological profile and mapping geographical distribution of road traffic accidents reported to a tertiary care hospital, Mangaluru using quantum geographic information system (QGIS). J Family Med Prim Care 2020;9:3652-6

How to cite this URL:
Shaira H, Naik PR, Pracheth R, Nirgude AS, Nandy S, Hiba M M, Karthika S. Epidemiological profile and mapping geographical distribution of road traffic accidents reported to a tertiary care hospital, Mangaluru using quantum geographic information system (QGIS). J Family Med Prim Care [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Aug 14];9:3652-6. Available from: http://www.jfmpc.com/text.asp?2020/9/7/3652/290766




  Introduction Top


Worldwide one of the leading causes of morbidity and mortality is Road Traffic Accidents (RTAs) accounting for more than one million deaths per year.[1] Accident is an “occurrence in a sequence of events which usually produces unintended injury, death, and property damage”.[2]

RTAs are defined as a collision involving at least one vehicle in motion on a public or private road that results in at least one person being injured or killed.[3]

It has been predicted that by 2020 global death rates from RTAs will rise by 67% due to the effect of rapid population growth, industrialization, and an increase in road vehicles.[4]

With increasing population, increasing vehicular density, and with poor infrastructure, the 21st century is loaded by RTAs.[3]

The worldwide annual average of RTA is approximately 7,00,000 and out of that 10% occur in India. It is estimated that in India, by 2020 RTA would have its fatal effect on about 5,50,000 people annually.[5]

The global status report on road safety 2015 reflects the information from 180 countries and it indicates that worldwide the total number of road traffic deaths has raised ground at 1.25 million per years, with the highest road traffic fatality rates in low income countries.

In 2018, seventeen countries have aligned at least one of their laws with best practice on seat belts, no drinking and driving, speed, motorcycle helmets, or child restraints.[6]

The World Health Organization predicts that road traffic injuries would become the sixth commonest cause of death by the year 2020 and the fifth by 2030.[4]

Understanding the epidemiology of RTAs and profile of injury is essential in the planning of preventive strategies and establishment of health care facilities offering appropriate services.

Geographic Information System (GIS) is a software that lets users to visualize, question, analyze, and interpret geographical data to help them understand and solve the issues regarding the relationships and patterns. It enables identify high risk areas that seek attention and call for action. The use of GIS will facilitate understand the spatiotemporal clustering of road traffic accidents. The compendious information extracted from QGIS elucidates the geographic accessibility to closest healthcare facilities in the terms of distance. The increased frequency of RTAs in a particular area calls for necessary preparedness to deal with trauma cases.[7] A study was conducted by Lakshmi et al., to describe the epidemiological profile of RTAs reported to a tertiary care hospital. The study also describes the spatial distribution of RTAs using QGIS software.[8]


  Materials and Methods Top


This was a record based descriptive study conducted in a tertiary care hospital of Mangaluru. The hospital is located in the southern part of Mangaluru city, Dakshina Kannada District, Karnataka state. The complete enumeration of all RTAs reported to Yenepoya Medical College Hospital (YMCH) during January 2018 to June 2018 was followed. The Institutional Ethics Committee approval was obtained for conducting the study (Protocol number: 2018/130, approved on 26-07-2018).

The case sheets of RTAs reported to the hospital during January 2018 to June 2018 were obtained from the medical record department of YMCH. The data was abstracted using a pre designed, pre tested, and semi-structured data abstraction tool. The information was collected on socio demographic profile of the patient (age, gender), profile of injuries (time of accident, site, and type of injury), and place of accident. The data was entered in Microsoft (MS) excel sheet. The data was analyzed using statistical package for social sciences (SPSS) (23.0 IBM, New York, USA). The descriptive statistics was reported as mean (SD) for continuous variables and frequency (proportions) for categorical variables. This study used an Open Source QGIS (QGIS, 2.18 QGIS Development Team) to depict spatial distribution of the road traffic accident on an open street map. The district-wise distribution of the road traffic accidents is depicted using QGIS software.

The permission to carry out the study was obtained from hospital authorities.


  Results Top


A total of 180 cases of RTAs were reported to the hospital during the study period.

Majority (45%) of the RTA victims belonged to the age group of 19–39 years. The mean age of the study participants was 33.99 years (±17.37). Among the RTA victims, majority (86.1%) were males, and 13.9% were females.[Table 1].
Table 1: Socio demographic details of the road traffic accident victims (n=180)

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Among the study participants, majority (48.3%) had lower limb injury followed by head, neck, and face (42.8%). Among the participants, majority (55.6%) had fractures followed by bruise (23.3%) [Table 2].
Table 2: Profile of road traffic injuries (n=180)

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As per type the of RTA, majority (55.6%) was motorbike accidents and another 17.2% were pedestrian accidents.[Table 3].
Table 3: Description of road traffic accidents (n=180)

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The RTA victims included drivers (47.8%), pedestrians (28.9%), and pillion riders (16.1%), information was missing in 13 case sheets and (3.9%) of the victims were under the influence of alcohol at the time of RTA. The study reported fatal outcome in (3.3%) of the RTAs. The complications reported among the road victims were monoplegia (3), paraplegia (2), hemiplegia (1), facial palsy (3), and neurological deficit (2).

[Figure 1] depicts the number of RTA by time period of the day. Among the RTAs, majority (40%) occurred during the evening hours of the day.
Figure 1: Percent of road traffic accidents by time period of the day (N = 180)

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The distribution of RTA is displayed using QGIS [Figure 2]. Among 180 RTAs reported to YMCH, the clustering of RTAs was seen in and around YMCH hospital, belonging to Dakshina Kannada district, North Karnataka and neighboring districts of Kerala.
Figure 2: Spot map of place of RTA of individuals with injury availing health care services from YMCH

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The map depicts the area wise distribution of RTAs in Mangaluru and clustering of cases is seen in localities such as Madaninagar, Thokkottu, and Derlakatte, which are in the vicinity of YMCH[Figure 3].
Figure 3: Spot map of road traffic accident (RTA) in Mangaluru

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  Discussion Top


Among the 180 road traffic victims, majority (45%) of them were belonging to the age group of 19–39 years. Similar findings were found in the study done by Ganveer GB et al.,[9] Kotresh M et al.[10] and Thalappillil Mathew Celine et al.[2] It was found that middle aged road users are the most common victims of RTAs. This can be attributed to the fact that they are more mobile, go for work, and keep themselves outdoor most of the hours.

Out of all the cases reviewed, majority (86.1%) belonged to male gender. The increased number of males being involved may be attributed to their occupation. Being involved in RTA leads to loss of productive days of work and incurring out of pocket expenditure on health care management thus pushing the family into financial stress. Similar observations are reported from studies conducted in Chithradurga,[10] Tirupati,[11] and Delhi.[12]

In our study, the majority of the RTA victims were drivers (47.8%) followed by pedestrians (28.9%) and pillion riders (16.1%). Similar results were found in the study done by Kotresh M et al.,[10] where the majority of the RTA victims were drivers. Hadaye RS et al. conducted a study which also showed similar results. They found that 47.9% of the victims were pedestrians and 12.1% were pillion riders.[13] Among the RTA victims 3.9% were under the influence of alcohol at the time of RTA. In a study done by Sigh A et al.[14] and Kotresh M et al.,[10] 18.01% and 14.8% were under the influence of alcohol at the time of RTA. Whereas, in a study done by Hadaye R S, the proportion of victims under the influence of alcohol was higher than in the current study i.e. 21.5%.[13] The study reported fatal outcome in (3.3%) of the RTAs. This finding is similar to a study done in Kerala (3.25%)[2] and Chithradurga (3.25%).[10]

Among the participants, majority (40%) of the RTA occurred during the evening hours of the day. This finding is similar to the study done by Biswaset al.[15] and Kotresh et al.,[10] where majority of the RTAs occurred during evening hours. Le K G et al. in their study were able to establish a relationship between the frequency of accidents and their time of occurrence and as per their study, the frequency was higher between 2:00 pm and 3:00 pm and also between 7:00 pm and 11:00 pm.[16] This might be attributed to increase in the activities on the road during evening hours. Moreover, it is speculated that people have reduced efficiency and focus towards the end of the day. Factors such as insufficient road lighting leading to poor visibility of roads and absence of traffic signals also contribute to RTAs during the evening hours.

The spatial distribution of RTAs was depicted using QGIS. Among 180 RTAs reported to YMCH, the clustering of RTAs was seen in and around YMCH hospital, belonging to Dakshina Kannada district and neighboring districts of Kerala. The clustering of cases is observed among those reported from north Karnataka and some parts of Kerala. This may be attributed to the proximity of these areas to the study site. They may have also approached this tertiary care hospital to avail specialty services. The RTAs reported to YMCH from Davanagere, Haveri, Bellary, and Chikamagaluru might be due to the health camps conducted in these districts by YMCH and the provision of healthcare facilities at subsidized rates. GIS was used by Le KG et al. at Hanoi, the area of study in Vietnam, and here hotspots were noted in the center of Hanoi, which has many cross roads and also along the National Highway (NH)-1A.[16] Achu AL et al. conducted a similar study in Thrissur, Kerala using a tool that identifies spatial clusters or hot spots and found clustering of accidents in Thrissur town.[17]

The key message of this study suggests the use of QGIS to depict the spatial distribution of RTA cases. We may not be able to generalize the study findings as it is a record based study from a single site, yet this could play out as strength of this study. Increased cases clustering about a specific region could be the cue to venture into the regional factors that might have led to the RTAs. Quite often, necessary accident preventive measures are implemented regionally by traffic officials for example, speed breakers constructed at places where deemed necessary. Therefore, in view of safeguarding lives, this could be advantageous if used by the regional traffic police departments to make necessary changes or increase vigilance.

What better way to handle RTA cases than to provide speedy and necessary primary care integrated with emergency care? With the exact location of hotspots for RTAs, nearest primary health centers or health facilities can be better equipped to manage trauma cases to provide quick and efficient care for the injured.

Considering the results obtained from this study, many young adult males succumbed to injuries following RTAs and this could be attributed to the fact that most men drive to and from work. This further probe us to find out if these accidents can be linked to reasons such as poor adoption of personal protective measures, inappropriate driving, geographical factors, and lighting. The use of QGIS to identify hotspots is quite unique and constructive in a manner such that it could help manage or alleviate the frequency of accidents by help making amends. Most importantly, providing primary health care at the appropriate place and at the appropriate time can save many lives especially in emergencies which could be the next step after having identified the places of clustering.


  Conclusion Top


We were able to describe the epidemiological profile of the RTAs and depict the spatial distribution and clustering of the cases using QGIS. The epidemiological determinants will help to plan tailored interventions and QGIS can be used at the health care system level as an important tool to plan preventive measures and early intervention measures at the site of RTA.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
  References Top

1.
WHO. Geneva: World Health Organisation; Road traffic injuries - Overview; Risk factors; WHO response. Available from: https://www.who.int/health-topics/road-safety#tab=tab_1.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Celine TM, Antony J. A study on injuries sustained in road traffic accidents at a tertiary care level. Int J Environ Health Eng 2014;1;3:23.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
WHO. Geneva: World Health Organisation; 2004. World Report on Road Traffic InjuryPrevention: Summary; 2004. Available from: https://www.who.int/publications-detail/world-report-on-road-traffic-injury-prevention.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Agarwal A, Kaur S, Dhillon MS. Sociodemographic profile of road traffic accident victims admitted at emergency surgical OPD of a tertiary care hospital. JPost GradMed Educ Res 2012;46:15-8.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
5.
Pathak SM, Jindal AK, Verma AK, Mahen A. An epidemiological study of road traffic accident cases admitted in a tertiary care hospital. MedJ Armed Forces India 2014;70:32-5.  Back to cited text no. 5
    
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Global status report on road safety 2018: Summary. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2018. Available from: https://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/road_safety_status/2018/GSRRS2018_Summary_EN.pdf.  Back to cited text no. 6
    
7.
Ahmed S, Adams AM, Islam R, Hasan SM, Panciera R. Impact of traffic variability on geographic accessibility to 24/7 emergency healthcare for the urban poor: A GIS study in Dhaka, Bangladesh. PLoS One 2019;14:e0222488.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
8.
Lakshmi S, Srikanth I, Arockiasamy M. Identification of traffic accident hotspots using geographical information system (GIS). Int J Eng Adv Technol2019;9:4429-38.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
9.
Ganveer GB, Tiwari RR. Injury pattern among non-fatal road traffic accident cases: Across-sectional study in Central India. Indian J Med Sci 2005;59:9-12.  Back to cited text no. 9
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Kotresh M. An epidemiological study of road traffic accidents in chitradurga city 2013;52.172.27-147.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
11.
Kahn PS, Hussain RA. An epidemiological study of road traffic accident cases attending a tertiary care hospital, Tirupati. Hindu 2015;715:87-2.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
12.
Ghosh PK. Epidemiological study of the victims of vehicular accidents in Delhi. J Indian Med Assoc 1992;90:309-12.  Back to cited text no. 12
    
13.
Hadaye RS, Rathod S, Shastri S. A cross-sectional study of epidemiological factors related to road traffic accidents in a metropolitan city. J Family Med Prim Care 2020;9:168-72.  Back to cited text no. 13
[PUBMED]  [Full text]  
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Singh A, Bhardwaj A, Pathak R, Ahluwalia SK. An epidemiological study of road traffic accident cases at a tertiary care hospital in rural Haryana. Indian J Community Health 2011;31;23:53-5.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
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Biswas G, Verma SK, Sharma JJ, Aggarwal NK. Pattern of road traffic accidents in North-East Delhi. J Forensic Med Toxicol2003;20:27-32.  Back to cited text no. 15
    
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Le KG, Liu P, Lin LT. Determining the road traffic accident hotspots using GIS-based temporal-spatial statistical analytic techniques in Hanoi, Vietnam. Geo Spat Inf Sci 2019;1:1-12.  Back to cited text no. 16
    
17.
Achu AL, Aju CD, Suresh V, Manoharan TP, Reghunath R. Spatio-temporal analysis ofroad accident incidents anddelineation ofhotspots using geospatial tools inThrissur District, Kerala, India. KN-Journal of Cartography and Geographic Information. Novermber 2019:1-14.  Back to cited text no. 17
    


    Figures

  [Figure 1], [Figure 2], [Figure 3]
 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3]



 

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