Improving Emergency Medical Service Response to Motor Vehicle Crashes in American Indian Reservations

The study's purpose is to identify needs and recommend interventions to improve emergency medical services (EMS) response to motor vehicle crashes (MVCs) in American Indian reservations. This project relates strongly to the Institute's focus on safety on tribal lands and safety policy and goals to promote implementation to improve roadway safety and develop partnerships with government agencies. MVCs are the leading cause of unintentional injury for American Indians ages 1 to 44 (Raynault et al. 2010), whose MVC fatality rate is the highest of any US ethnic or racial group (Pollack et al. 2012). While the gap may be narrowing (Li & Bhagavathula 2016), MVC impacts for American Indians remain unacceptably high. Little research has been conducted to explain the risk factors or test interventions. Previously, the research team created innovative methodologies to collect local knowledge about reservation roadway safety (Narvaez & Quick 2016). Using those results and literature review, the team helped the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA's) Tribal Transportation Program design a national survey of tribes. Asked the top three of sources of roadway safety risk on their reservations, 18% of 150 tribal government respondents selected slow emergency response time. The survey indicates that inadequate EMS response is a critical problem, in the informed opinion of the people with the greatest knowledge and interest in roadway safety on reservations. The California Tribal Road Safety Data Project has gathered similar data (Ragland 2016). Emergency response barriers may include the condition of the roadway, access and connectivity to remote areas, long travel times to trauma centers, and poor address and mapping data for emergency dispatch (Miller & Killia, 2017); the research team's own data suggest Indian Health Service (IHS) facilities and coordination among EMS agencies may improve response. However, no systematic research has been done to identify what the EMS problem is. This project will fill a critical knowledge gap for effective interventions.


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Funding: $100000
  • Contract Numbers:



  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Research and Innovative Technology Administration

    University Transportation Centers Program
    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    Roadway Safety Institute

    University of Minnesota
    Minneapolis, MN  United States  55455

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

    University Transportation Centers Program
    Department of Transportation
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Stearns, Amy

  • Performing Organizations:

    University of Minnesota

    Humphrey School of Public Affairs
    301 19th Ave S
    Minneapolis, MN  United States  55455
  • Principal Investigators:

    Quick, Kathryn

  • Start Date: 20180226
  • Expected Completion Date: 20190531
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01664799
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Roadway Safety Institute
  • Contract Numbers: DTRT13-G-UTC35, CTS-2018059
  • Files: UTC, RiP
  • Created Date: Mar 28 2018 1:50PM