Law enforcement officers’ risk perceptions toward on-duty motor-vehicle events
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Law enforcement officers’ risk perceptions toward on-duty motor-vehicle events
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Details:
  • Alternative Title:
    Policing
  • Description:
    Purpose Motor-vehicle-related events (MVEs) are the leading cause of on-duty death for law enforcement officers, yet little is known about how officers view this significant job hazard. The purpose of this paper is to explore officers’ motor-vehicle risk perception and examine how prior on-duty MVEs and the death or injury of a fellow officer influences this perception. Design/methodology/approach A state-wide random sample of 136 law enforcement agencies was drawn using publically accessible databases, stratified on type and size of agency. In total, 60 agencies agreed to participate and a cross-sectional questionnaire was distributed to 1,466 officers. Using six-point Likert scales, composite scores for motor-vehicle and intentional violence risk perception were derived. A linear regression multivariable model was used to examine factors affecting motor-vehicle risk perception. Findings Motor-vehicle risk perception scores were significantly higher than intentional violence scores. A prior on-duty motor-vehicle crash, prior roadside incident, or knowledge of fellow officer’s injury or death from a MVE significantly increased motor-vehicle risk perception scores. After controlling for potential confounders though, only prior on-duty crashes and roadside incidents impacted motor-vehicle risk perception. Research limitations/implications The study comprised primarily small, rural agencies and generalizability may be limited. Also, although the data were collected anonymously, reporting and response biases may affect these findings. Originality/value This study involved a large and diverse cohort of officers and explored motor-vehicle risk perception. A better understanding of officers’ risk perceptions will assist in the development and implementation of occupational injury prevention programs, training, and policy.
  • Pubmed ID:
    26380563
  • Pubmed Central ID:
    PMC4570477
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