Road Crash early data

The first road accident statistics show that 2,246 people were killed in 1924, 5,608 in 1930, 6,221 in 1933 and 5,650 in 1937.

The first BAAC appeared in 1938, the first detailed report in 1951.

First crash data -the period before 1938

The first information was compiled by Jean Orselli, while working at the Conseil Général des Ponts et Chaussées with Steve BERNARDIN, on behalf of the Ministry's History Committee on the history of traffic and road safety.

Road accident statistics date back to the 19th century. At the time, there were statistics on " Fatalities from violent death", broken down by road type and other causes. This information can be found in the registers of judicial statistics of the Chancellery. Nevertheless, very little was known about road traffic, while for railways, the statistics had been accurate for a long time.

After Cugnot's first car in 1769, the traffic was mainly horse-drawn. In 1782 a regulation for the driving of carts appeared, and in 1899 the certificate of automobile ability. From 1900, France, the world's leading car manufacturer, began to have real car traffic. The fleet accounted for 1672 vehicles.

At the end of 1903, after the establishment of a road traffic commission, an accident investigation was carried out. For Jean ORSELLI, it is the birth of "accidentology", a term that has become commonly used. This investigation led to a report in 1904. This survey was reissued in a less detailed manner in 1907.

After the 1914-1918 war, between 1920 and the end of the 1930s, specific statistics can be found in the Ministries of the Interior and National Defence for the police and gendarmerie. We can give the following series for this period:

First BAAC data results 1938-1951

Following the work of an international commission for the unification of road traffic accident statistics in Geneva under the aegis of the League of Nations, a decree of 5 February 1937 entrusted the Central Service of Statistics and Documentation of the Ministry of Public Works with the task of establishing and publishing statistics on road traffic accidents leading to injury. We are therefore already seeing the definition of the exhaustiveness of the census, based on injuries, appear.

On November 18, 1937, a form was approved by the services and can be considered as the first BAAC (Bulletin d'Analyse d'Accident Corporel). The Ministry of the Interior and the Ministry of Defence are responsible for identifying the elements as from 1 January 1938.

Already at that time the problem of correcting the information arose. It is estimated that it takes 2.5 months to compile the statistics. At that time, monthly statistics on accidents and victims were published, by department, by day, by hour, by type of collision, by road conditions.

For example, in January 1938, there were 3471 accidents recorded, including 295 fatalities, resulting in 319 deaths, 1058 serious injuries and 3106 minor injuries.

The following table, with the stop due to the Second World War, brings together the information we have left today: