Fact

Kosten verkeersongevallen - Hoe verhouden de kosten in Nederland zich tot die in andere landen?

Costs as a percentage of the gross domestic product

With 2.2% of the gross domestic product (GDP) the Netherlands is among the countries with relatively high costs of road crashes, while we occupy 11th place from the road safety perspective (number of deaths per inhabitant) [17].In Europe, the costs range from 0.4% to 4.1% of the GDP (Figure 4). The costs in the Netherlands are also higher than in Australia and New Zealand (both 1.7% of the GDP), but much lower than in the United States (6.0% of the GDP) [8].The costs in seven Asian low-and middle-income countries range from 1.1% to 2.9% of the GDP [8].

Figure 4. Costs of road crashes, as a percentage of the GDP in 31 European countries [7].

 

Rather than by differences in the level of road safety, the differences in total costs between countries are mainly explained by differences in the way the costs are calculated, in particular the human costs [7]. Also, there are many countries that, unlike the Netherlands, do not take into account underregistration of casualties and crashes, or do not include property damage only crashes in their cost estimates. Furthermore, countries differ in the cost items they include. As has been advocated by international road safety organisations such as IRTAD, FERSI and ETSC [3]. greater uniformity in the methods used is therefore required for proper comparison of the costs of road crashes in different countries. When the cost estimates in European countries are corrected for methodological shortcomings, the costs of road crashes in Europe are estimated at a minimum of 3% of the GDP [15].

Costs of a road death and a serious road injury

Also the costs per road death are higher in the Netherlands than in most other countries. In Europe, these costs range from € 0.7 million to € 3.1 million (see Figure 5)[i]. In Australia the costs per road death are lower than in the Netherlands, but in the United States they are much higher [8].Differences are mainly explained by differences in the method of estimating the human costs: in countries that use a 'willingness to pay’ method, among which the Netherlands, these costs are higher [7] [8] [18] [19].

In most European countries the costs of a serious road injury[ii] are between 10% and 20% of the costs of a road death. With 11 % of the costs of a road death, the costs of a serious road injury are relatively low in the Netherlands (Figure 6). In absolute amounts, there are large differences between countries in the costs per serious road injury; in 2015 these range from € 28,000 to € 959,000.

Figure 5. Costs of a road death in 31 European countries (million euro, price level 2015) [7].

 

Figure 6. Costs of a serious road injury as a percentage of the costs of a road death in 31 European countries [7].

 


[i] Due to inflation and a correction for differences in purchasing power between countries, the costs per fatality in the Netherlands are lower in Figure 5 than the data provided by KiM.

[ii]These are the costs of a serious road injury such as defined in each country; these definitions differ between countries.

Pictures

Fact sheet

This fact is part of:

Updated

24 Mar 2020

Would you like to cite this fact sheet?