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The Effect of COVID-19 Lockdown on Mobility and Traffic Accidents: Evidence from Louisiana

Stephen Barnes (), Louis-Philippe Beland (), Jason Huh () and Dongwoo Kim ()
Additional contact information
Jason Huh: Department of Economics, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, https://faculty.rpi.edu/jason-huh

No 20-12, Carleton Economic Papers from Carleton University, Department of Economics

Abstract: We use a regression discontinuity design to study the effect of the COVID-19 lockdown on mobility and traffic accidents. Based on data from Google Community Mobility reports and Uniform Traffic Crash Report from the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (LaDOTD), we find that the stay-at-home order led to a large decrease in traffic accidents (-47 percent). In particular, we find a large decrease in accidents involving injury (-46 percent), distracted drivers (-43 percent), and ambulances (-41 percent). We also find evidence of a change in the composition of accidents, with more incidents involving individuals aged 25 to 64, male, and nonwhite drivers. Interestingly, we find no impact on ambulance response time, despite lower traffic. Finally, we document a large decrease in mobility in Louisiana. Our results have important policy implications for traffic management policies.

Keywords: COVID-19; Lockdown; Accidents; Traffic Management; Regression Discontinuity (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: D62 H41 R20 R41 R42 R48 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 39 pages
Date: 2020-07
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-hea, nep-tre and nep-ure
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Citations: View citations in EconPapers (9) Track citations by RSS feed

Published: Carleton Economics Papers

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