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Sustainability 2015, 7(6), 7310-7332; doi:10.3390/su7067310

External Costs to Parties Involved in Highway Traffic Accidents: The Perspective of Highway Users

Department of Civil Engineering, National Chi Nan University, No.1, University Rd, Puli, Nantou County 54561, Taiwan
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Marc A. Rosen
Received: 14 April 2015 / Revised: 26 May 2015 / Accepted: 1 June 2015 / Published: 9 June 2015
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
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Abstract

This study explores highway travellers’ willingness to pay (WTP) for external costs caused by traffic accidents. There are a number of further external costs, the paper focuses on two externalities: air pollution and time delays. Data collection was performed using the face-to-face survey method, and the surveys were carried out at highway rest areas. Air pollution and time delays were divided into three levels of severity (light, moderate and severe) to obtain the interviewees’ WTP according to each level of severity. The result of this study demonstrates that there are many samples with zero WTP because penalties for pollution caused by traffic accidents are not currently enforced in Taiwan. Thus, the spike model was adopted in this study to overcome any estimation error that might be caused by excessive NT$0 WTP samples. The results show that variables such as age, education, income and willingness to participate in activities of environmental protection have a positive effect on WTP for air pollution, whereas variables such as occupation, travel purpose, traveller identity, travel time and travel distance have a significantly positive effect on WTP for time delays. WTP for nitrogen dioxide (NO2) is NT$8862–11,502/metric ton (US$1 = NT$30) and WTP for carbon dioxide (CO2) is NT$1070–2693/metric ton. Moreover, WTP for time delays is NT$960–1320/h. The findings of this study not only demonstrate WTP for air pollution and time delays in the minds of parties to traffic accidents but also help to provide agencies with a basis to formulate applicable penalties in the future. View Full-Text
Keywords: willingness to pay; air pollution; value of time; spike model willingness to pay; air pollution; value of time; spike model
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Jou, R.-C.; Chen, T.-Y. External Costs to Parties Involved in Highway Traffic Accidents: The Perspective of Highway Users. Sustainability 2015, 7, 7310-7332.

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