Motorcycle-Related Trauma in South Sudan: a cross sectional observational study
Motorcycle related trauma is a major cause of morbidity in those of working age in the developing world. One hundred and sixteen patients involved in motorcycle related accidents were identified over four weeks at the Juba Teaching Hospital in South Sudan. Of these 84% were male with an average age of 26.7 years. Most male injuries involved drivers, whereas the majority of female injuries were to pedestrians. The commonest injuries were lacerations, abrasions and fractures, and the commonest regions injured were the lower and upper limbs and the head and face.
Forty-four patients were admitted to the ward. Forty six percent of men interviewed did not hold a license, 96.5% of drivers and 91.3% of passengers were not wearing a helmet and 24.6% of drivers were under the influence of alcohol at the time of injury.
The vast majority of accidents occurred on surfaced roads within Central Juba. This study highlights the need for tighter regulation of motorcycle ownership, usage and personal safety in addition to wider infrastructural development. In doing this it might be possible to reduce morbidity and the socioeconomic impact on those involved in motorcycle related accidents and the families who depend on them. Significant injuries to the head and face were recorded, but no enquiries were made about cognitive impairment. Organised rehabilitation of those injured needs serious consideration by the Ministry of Health.