Road traffic injury accounts for a substantial human and economic burden globally. Understanding risk factors contributing to fatal injuries is of paramount importance. In this study, we proposed a model that adopts a hybrid ensemble machine learning classifier structured from sequential minimal optimization and decision trees to identify risk factors contributing to fatal road injuries. The model was constructed, trained, tested, and validated using the Lebanese Road Accidents Platform (LRAP) database of 8482 road crash incidents, with fatality occurrence as the outcome variable. A sensitivity analysis was conducted to examine the influence of multiple factors on fatality occurrence. Seven out of the nine selected independent variables were significantly associated with fatality occurrence, namely, crash type, injury severity, spatial cluster-ID, and crash time (hour). Evidence gained from the model data analysis will be adopted by policymakers and key stakeholders to gain insights into major contributing factors associated with fatal road crashes and to translate knowledge into safety programs and enhanced road policies.
Keywords: classifier ensemble; fatal crashes; machine learning; road fatality factors.