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Can public transportation reduce accidents? Evidence from the introduction of late-night buses in Israeli cities

Shirlee Lichtman-Sadot

Regional Science and Urban Economics, 2019, vol. 74, issue C, 99-117

Abstract: The notion that public transportation can mitigate accidents has been widely claimed, but to-date empirical evidence that supports this relationship in a causal manner is scarce. This paper presents results from difference-in-differences (DID) and triple differences (DDD) frameworks that exploit the introduction of late-night buses (night buses) into cities in Israel beginning in 2007. The preferred DDD specification utilizes spatial, temporal, and time-of-day variation in estimating the effect of night bus frequencies on accident outcomes. The results show a reduction in accidents involving young drivers in response to night buses, on the order of 37% in the mean metropolitan area served by night buses. Injuries resulting from these accidents also decrease by 24%. Results are robust to alternative DDD estimations, which utilize variation in the day of the week that night buses operate. Overall, the results suggest that public transportation - and in particular late-night public transportation - can entail substantial benefits in terms of road accident reductions.

Keywords: Public transportation; Road accidents; Risky behavior; Drunk driving (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: R41 R42 R58 I12 I18 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2019
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DOI: 10.1016/j.regsciurbeco.2018.11.009

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