Comparative study of road traffic accidents caused by motorcycles before and after the Lagos state new traffic laws.

Surulere MO1*, Campbell PC1
1Department of Community Health and Primary Care, College of Medicine, University of Lagos.
*Correspondence: Surulere MO; +234 805 162 9186;

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Background: Road traffic accidents are among the commonest causes of death and disability worldwide with a high burden of these accidents occurring in developing nations. In Nigeria, Lagos State has one of the highest rates of accidents contributing significantly to the burden of death and disability among motorcyclists in the country. With the high frequency, mortality rates and morbidity associated with motorcycle related road traffic accidents in Lagos, there arose a need for an intervention (traffic laws) and a need to assess the impact of traffic laws in reducing the frequency of road traffic accidents in the state.
Objectives: To compare the frequencies, morbidity patterns and associated mortality of motorcycle- related road traffic accidents before and after the Lagos State new traffic law.
Materials and Methods: A comparative cross-sectional study design in which a total of 202 case notes were retrieved by systematic sampling. Data gathered included age, sex, occupation of the patients, mode of involvement, use of safety devices e.g., helmet use, nature of their injuries and death during or after the accident if any.
Results: It was found that more males were affected representing 58.56% pre-law, while more females were affected post-law representing 51.56%. Before the ban, six deaths representing 5.41% occurred as compared with no death after the ban. The most common part of the body involved was the lower limb region; 76.58% and 68.13% pre-law and post-law respectively. The most common upper limb fracture was the radial bone fracture; 36.59% pre-law and 25.71% post-law. Upper limb dislocation was found in 36.59% of the respondents, pre-law and 31.43% of the respondents, post-law. The most common lower limb fracture was that of tibia and fibula which accounted for 35.29% pre-law and 41.94% post-law. Lower limb dislocation was found in 2.35% of the respondents, pre-law and 1.61% of the respondents, post-law.
Conclusion: This study suggests that the impact of the law is promising as there has been a marked reduction in motorcycle related road traffic accidents, hence the need for continued enforcement by road traffic agencies and compliance from road users.

Keywords: Road traffic accidents, Motorcycles, Pedestrians, Pre-law, Post-law.

Cite this article: Surulere MO, Campbell PC. Comparative study of road traffic accidents caused by motorcycles before and after the Lagos state new traffic laws. Yen Med J. 2020;2(1):28-37.


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