Prevalence and determinants of road traffic injuries in Ethiopia

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Mussie Gebremichael
Mulugeta Guta
Mola Gedefaw
Alemayehu Bekele
Fassil Shiferaw
Terefe Gelibo
Theodros Getachew
Kissi Mudie
Kassahun Amenu
Atkure Defar
Habtamu Teklie
Tefera Taddele
Girum Taye
Misrak Getnet
Geremew Gonfa
Yeweyenhareg Feleke
Tedla Kebede
Dejuma Yadeta
Feyissa Challa
Yewondwossen Tadesse
Abebe Bekele


Introduction: Among African countries, Ethiopia has a relatively high burden of road traffic injuries. It is challenging to accurately estimate the public health burden and causes of road traffic crash in Ethiopia.
Objective: The objective of this study is to describe the prevalence and determinants of road traffic injuries in Ethiopia.
Methods: A population-based cross sectional study was conducted in accordance with the World Health Organization step-wise approach to survey of non-communicable diseases risk factors. The survey was carried out between April and June 2015. Men and women adults ages 15-69 years old were the target population. A single population-proportion formula was implemented to determine the sample size. Data were entered using e-STEPS, cleaned and analysed using SPSS and Stata. Descriptive weighted analysis was done along with complex sample analysis and bivariate and multivariate analysis was conducted for RTIs and associated factors.
Results: About 3% (2.7%, 95% CI: 1.8-3.5) of respondents were involved in a road traffic crash as a passenger, driver, or pedestrian during the prior 12 months. Our study found that the risk of being involved in road traffic injuries in those who have completed primary education is 1.4 times higher than in those that have no formal education (95% CI: 1.002-1.992). Those whose household income level is above 30,000 Ethiopian birr (ETB) had the highest involvement in road traffic injuries (4.2%). Those whose annual household income is above 30,000 ETB have an about 2 times increased risk of being involved in road traffic injuries than those whose annual income is below 12,000 ETB (95% CI between 1.313-3.230). The finding revealed that the risk of being involved in road traffic injuries is about 2 times higher in those who chew the plant khat (Catha endulis) than in those who do not chew khat (95% CI: 1.368-2.774).
Conclusion: The fact that the most economically productive age group are affected by road traffic injuries has serious economic implications for their immediate families and for the country, in general. Based on the finding of this study, level of education, household income and khat use are determinants of road traffic injuries in Ethiopia. These findings indicate that higher education has a role in reducing the risk of road traffic injuries. Based on this study we conclude that income of the individuals is directly proportional to road traffic crashes. [Ethiop. J. Health Dev. 2017;31(Special Issue):340-347
Key words: Road traffic injuries, prevalence, determinants, population-based, Ethiopia

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How to Cite
Gebremichael, M., Guta, M., Gedefaw, M., Bekele, A., Shiferaw, F., Gelibo, T., Getachew, T., Mudie, K., Amenu, K., Defar, A., Teklie, H., Taddele, T., Taye, G., Getnet, M., Gonfa, G., Feleke, Y., Kebede, T., Yadeta, D., Challa, F., Tadesse, Y., & Bekele, A. (1). Prevalence and determinants of road traffic injuries in Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Journal of Health Development (EJHD), 31(1). Retrieved from
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