International Journal of Innovative Research and Knowledge

Volume-3 Issue-12, December 2018

Title: A Matter of Life and Death: Road Traffic Accidents in Sri Lanka

Author: TMF. Wazeema


Road Traffic Accident (RTA) is a noticeable social problem in Sri Lanka which has become a major obstacle in the development process and has great impact in all aspects of life. This exploratory study was conducted among 30 victims who met with RTA in 2016. The main objectives of this study were to explore the reasons behind RTA, to analyse the socio-cultural aspects of RTA and to exemplify the diverse effects of RTA with the aim of promoting health and well-being of people through preventing RTAs in Sri Lanka with special reference to Akkaraipattu Divisional Secretariat division of Ampara district. Primary data were collected using interviews and observations while secondary data were collected through records, journals, books, articles, reports and websites. Collected data were analysed using both qualitative and quantitative analysis methods and presented in a descriptive way. RTA mostly occurred among young and middle-aged adults between the age range of 22 to 50 and male population has been identified as the highly vulnerable group. Road users, vehicle, road conditions, road design and environmental factors were the contributory factors of RTA. Violation of traffic rules was identified as the most prominent reason (22%) and driving while being sleepy and fatigue was the least contributory reason (8%) for RTA. The lives of the people are influenced by their cultural norms and values which affect the way they distinguish road safety and regulations. The consequences of RTA can be classified into four broad categories as physical effects, financial effects, social effects and psychological effects. The physical effects of RTA can range from minor to severe. It creates enormous economic hardship to the entire family. Social cost of RTA has become unavoidable burden to the development of the country that includes the loss of productivity of the victims cost of legal system and health sector of the country. RTAs affect the health and emotional well-being of the participants. The victims have fallen into post-traumatic stress disorder like anxiety and depression. Most of the victims moved from western medical system to traditional medical system due to its availability, low-cost and good relationship between traditional medical practitioner and the victims. RTAs are predictable and preventable. Comprehensive measures, road safety programmes, good policies and plans interventions which include better understanding of the social impact of road-related deaths and injuries are important to preserve the precious life of human beings.

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ISSN: 2213-1356

Publisher: Scholar Touch Publishers

Area/Scope: Business, Economics & Management; Social Science, Literature, Arts & Humanities; Engineering & Technology; Life Science & Physical Science, Health & Medical Science

Frequency: Monthly

Format: Online & Print

Language: English

Review Process: Double Blinded

Access: Open Access