Death on the Road
To use the Percentage Tutor
by Quantum Simulations™ as a tool to analyze
traffic fatality data.
Highway Administration - United States Department
- On Wednesday,
May 21, Kasey Travis, a teenager from Odessa, Texas,
was jailed and charged with manslaughter in the death
of her classmate Amber Goolsby. According to the
official report, alcohol was a factor in the April
10th accident. Seventeen-year-old Amber Goolsby died
at the scene after the car in which she was riding
failed to stop at a stop sign, went airborne, and
struck a tree.
- The Texas
Alcoholic Beverage Commission is preparing to file
charges against three individuals for providing the
minors with alcohol. Odessa
- As tragic as this accident was, it
was only one of over 37,000 fatal traffic accidents that
occur in the United States every year.
- You know the statistics well. You
are an investigator with the U.S. Department of
Transportation. Your job is to analyze the latest
statistics from the National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration and prepare a report on traffic fatality
- Since raw data are difficult to
analyze, you have decided to calculate percentages
before you look for trends.
- Begin by opening the file
Traffic Fatality Statistics.
(This is a Microsoft
Word file.) Print a copy of the
form to use as you complete this activity.
- Note that the form has two parts.
The upper portion contains raw numbers (some of the
larger numbers have been rounded off to reflect their
lack of precision). The lower portion of the form is a
chart that you must complete.
- To complete the lower chart, you
must either calculate the percentage that one number is
of another, or use a given percentage to calculate an
- Study the numbers in the upper
chart and determine which ones you should use to make
- Try to complete the first column
without any help. Then, use the Percentage Tutor to make
sure that you are calculating correctly. If you are
making mistakes, the Percentage Tutor will help you get
the right answer. There are three
different kinds of percentage
problems that the Tutor can
help you with.
- The Percentage Tutor can be found
at the web address that your teacher will provide to
- When you have finished filling in
the chart, examine it carefully. Do you see any
trends--are percentages rising or falling over time, or
is there no trend?
- If you see any trends in the
percentages you have calculated, you should circle or
highlight the row in the lower chart that shows the
- Submit the "Fatal
Accident Data Analysis Chart"
to your supervisor (your teacher). Make sure that you
have indicated any trends that you observe.
© 2003 Event-Based Science