Measuring the Effectiveness of Vehicle Inspection Regulations in Different States of the US Academic Article uri icon


  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administrations (NHTSA) guideline on state motor vehicle inspection programs recommends that states should maintain a vehicle safety inspection program to reduce the crash outcomes from the number of vehicles with existing or potential conditions. Some states have started to terminate the vehicle safety inspection program because of insufficient effectiveness measures, budget constraints, and modern safer automobiles. Despite the consensus that these periodic inspection programs improve vehicle condition and improve safety, research remains inconclusive about the effect of safety inspection programs on crash outcomes. There is little recent research on the relationship between vehicle safety inspection programs and whether these programs reduce crash rates or crash severities. According to the 20112016 Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) data, nearly 2.6% of fatal crashes happened as a result of the vehicles pre-existing manufacturing defects. NHTSAs vehicle complaint database incorporates more than 1.4 million complaint reports. These reports contain extended information on vehicle-related disruptions. Around 5% of these reports involve some level of injury or fatalities. This study used these two databases to determine the effectiveness of vehicle inspection regulation programs in different states of the U.S. A statistical significance test was performed to determine the effectiveness of the vehicle safety inspection programs based on the states with and without safety inspection in place. This study concludes that there is a need for vehicle safety inspections to be continued for the reduction of vehicle complaints.

published proceedings


author list (cited authors)

  • Das, S., Geedipally, S. R., Dixon, K., Sun, X., & Ma, C.

citation count

  • 13

complete list of authors

  • Das, Subasish||Geedipally, Srinivas R||Dixon, Karen||Sun, Xiaoduan||Ma, Chaolun

publication date

  • May 2019