Prepared to Crash? A Preliminary Study on Traffic Accidents Caused by Risky Driver Behaviors Captured on Livestream Social Media
Road traffic incidents result in 1.3 million deaths a year (World Health Organization, 2022). Typically, an understanding of factors contributing to accidents is derived from external evidential factors such as witnesses, skid marks, and closed closed-circuit television (CCTV) footage. However, new technologies are now capturing driving behaviours inside a vehicle as they occur. The present study attempts to shed light on traffic accidents, utilising livestream video footage to conduct Ecological Momentary Assessments of these real-time driver behaviours. In an Archival study, data was collected from the online domain (i.e., electronic news sources, web-based video networking sites, social networking sites), carefully screening potential videos for inclusion and then coded into relevant categories. Fisher’s Exact Tests were then used to explore relationships between different variables (i.e., phone manipulation, driver injury, driving maneuverers and behaviours). Although statistical power was low, trends were observed indicating potential relationships between phone use and poor driving manoeuvres, namely interference from talking was impairing lane overtaking or lane turning. Specific cases were then examined, revealing that these traffic incidents involved intoxication, speeding for personal thrills, driver distraction, and mobile phone use. This study offers insight into the capabilities of the proposed roadside cameras that are currently being implemented to capture driver distraction.