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CHAPTER 4 Database Analysis This section analyzes the major crash databases and identifies fields that can provide answers to "why" questions in determining root cause. Each of the following major databases is included in this discussion: Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS) Hazardous Materials Incident Reporting System (HMIRS) Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) Trucks Involved in Fatal Accidents (TIFA) Large Truck Crash Causation Study (LTCCS) Railroad Accident/Incident Reporting System (RAIRS) Marine Information for Safety and Law Enforcement (MISLE) In addition, the NTSB and Hazardous Materials Serious Crash Analysis: Phase 2 (Battelle 2005) approaches to accident analysis are described. 4.1 Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS) 4.1.1 MCMIS Database Description MCMIS includes four major files named Registration, Crash, Inspection, and Company Safety Profile. For this project, the Registration and Crash files are the most relevant. Although the focus of this analysis will be on the Crash file, when trying to identify the contributing and root causes of accidents, information in the Registration file can provide useful supplemental information. Specif- ically, the Registration file has carrier information on the number and configuration of vehicles, the number of drivers, annual miles driven, and accident rates. Such information is needed to determine the extent to which a class of accidents with similar contributing or root causes might be occurring annually. Vehicle miles traveled (VMT) helps estimate the risk of occurrence by pro- viding a measure of exposure. Identifying the risk enables officials to target resources for reducing the number of accidents. The design of the Crash file was developed in 1992 to record information on serious accidents involving a truck, bus, or light vehicle transporting hazmat. The types of information collected on each heavy truck or bus involved in these serious accidents has changed little since it was developed. The process of reporting serious accidents begins with a law enforcement official fill- ing out a police accident report (PAR). The state agency responsible for filing the MCMIS crash report screens the PARs to identify serious heavy truck and bus accidents. Once the state report- ing agency finds an accident that meets the requirements for reporting the incident to FMCSA, the information for the vehicle from the PAR is coded into the MCMIS Crash file format and 32