Back to Annual Meeting
Back to Annual Meeting
APHA Scientific Session and Event Listing

Traffic injuries in Cotonou, Benin: Current situation and promising alternatives

Bernard Gnahoui1, David Houeto, MD MPH1, and Luis Tam, MD DrPH2. (1) Plan Benin, Parcelle 1863, V Fifadji, Cotonou, Benin, 229-384773, luis.tam@planusa.org, (2) Plan USA, 1730 N Lynn St Suite 600, Arlington, VA 22209

Cotonou, the capital city of Benin in West Africa, harbors 1 million inhabitants and nearly 80,000 motorized vehicles. It has one of the largest case fatality rates due to traffic injuries in West Africa, i.e. 90 per 10,000 vehicles and 7 per 100,000 population. A longitudinal study of the 1987 to 2003 traffic records disclosed 6481 fatalities. The records of the fatalities occurred during 2003 (obtained from police, health facilities and others)were reviewed by the authors in order to ascertain the characteristics of these deaths. Wednesdays and Fridays of April, May and June of 2003 harbored more than 35% of fatalities for 2003. Frequent times for fatal accidents were 10 to 13 hs, 16 to 17 hs and 20 to 21 hs. 42% of fatalities involved private passenger vehicles, followed by trucks and buses (14%) and taxis-motos (6%). Pedestrians and passengers were 80% of road fatalities, with apredominance of males and persons aged 16 to 65 years. Children are often injured as pedestrians. Risk factors associated to road fatalities were over-speeding, alcohol abuse, negligence of drivers, vehicles overloaded with people, inadequate maintenance of vehicles, bad roads and negligence of pedestrians. Based on the findings of this study, the Government of Benin and a group of national and international NGOs (including Plan Benin) are designing a comprehensive strategy to manage this situation, both through the promotion of safer behaviors among drivers, passengers and pedestrians and the enactment of enforceable regulation. The presentation will discuss the progress made through this initiative.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Injury Control, Injury Prevention

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Not Answered

Health Systems Management: Evidence, Information, and Human Resources

The 134th Annual Meeting & Exposition (November 4-8, 2006) of APHA