What are the costs of road crashes for society?


Approximately 11% of the overall costs of road crashes is attributable to road deaths (see Figure 12). More than one third of the total societal costs of road crashes (about 37%) can be attributed to serious road injuries. Casualties with slight injuries (treated in a hospital emergency room) have a share of about 22% and other casualties a share of about 6% in societal costs. About a quarter (24%) of the costs is attributable to crashes with property damage only (PDO).

The overall social costs of road crashes in 2018 were estimated to be 17 billion euro (€16 to €19 billion) [3]). This is more than 2% of the gross domestic product. The costs per road death are about €2.8 million. For more information see SWOV fact sheet Road crash costs. A more recent international study shows that the value of a human life is estimated at €6,3 million, about three times higher than in previous estimations [4].


Figure 12. Proportions of deaths, serious/slight/other injuries and property damage only (PDO) crashes of the total road crash costs (2018) [3].

Afbeelding FS Verkeersdoden
Part of fact sheet

Road deaths in the Netherlands

In 2021, there were 582 road deaths in the Netherlands. Although this number is again lower than in previous years, it is not the lowest number up Meer

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