The epidemiology of road traffic injuries in the Republic of Lithuania, 1998-2007

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date



European Journal of Public Health








Eastern Europe; Lithuania; road accidents; road traffic injuries; trauma


Background: This article highlights the epidemiology of road traffic injury (RTI) in Lithuania between 1998 and 2007. The purpose of this study is to explore the incidence of RTI, age-standardized mortality rates (ASMR), gender-specific rates and the RTI profile of different user groups. In doing so, this analysis attempts to emphasize the need for RTI prevention policies and programmes. Methods: Six databases were analysed using ICD-10 codes V01-V99, pertaining to the causes of road traffic crashes. Data between 1998 and 2007 were obtained from these databases to identify and calculate RTI incidence and mortality rates. This was then analysed with regard to ASMR, gender, user groups and the use of alcohol. Results: In 2007, RTI incidence in Lithuania was reported as 270/100 000 people, 10.7 higher than in 1998. ASMR declined from 28 deaths per 100 000 in 1998 to 25 deaths per 100 000 in 2007. Between 1998 and 2007, the male ASMR declined from 46 to 40 deaths per 100 000 and the female ASMR decreased from 13 to 11 deaths per 100 000. Car occupant and pedestrian fatalities comprised 87 of all RTI deaths. Thirty-four percent of those injured and 21 of the dead were under influence of alcohol. Conclusions: From 1998 to 2007, the incidence of RTI has worsened and mortality rates remain high in Lithuania. Alcohol remains a prominent risk factor of traffic injury and death. The need to develop effective prevention programmes to address traffic injury is essential. © The Author 2010. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Public Health Association. All rights reserved.