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Traffic accidents are among the major causes of death in the Sultanate of Oman This is particularly the case in the age group of I6 to 25. Studies indicate that, in spite of Oman's high population-per-vehicle ratio, its fatality rate per l0,000 vehicles is one of the highest in the world. This alarming Situation underlines the importance of analyzing traffic accident data and predicting accident casualties. Such steps will lead to understanding the underlying causes of traffic accidents, and thereby to devise appropriate measures to reduce the number of car accidents and enhance safety standards. In this paper, a comparative study of car accident casualties in Oman was undertaken. Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) were used to analyze the data and make predictions of the number of accident casualties. The results were compared with those obtained from the analysis and predictions by regression techniques. Both approaches attempted to model accident casualties using historical  data on related factors, such as population, number of cars on the road and so on, covering the period from I976 to 1994. Forecasts for the years 1995 to 2000 were made using ANNs and regression equations. The results from ANNs provided the best fit for the data. However, it was found that ANNs gave lower forecasts relative to those obtained by the regression methods used, indicating that ANNs are suitable for interpolation but their use for extrapolation may be limited. Nevertheless, the study showed that ANNs provide a potentially powerful tool in analyzing and forecasting traffic accidents and casualties.


science applied science basic science

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