FARS contains data on a census of fatal traffic crashes abstracted from official state documents, including police accident reports, state vehicle registration files, state driver license files, state highway department data, vital statistics data, death certificates (coded to ICD-10 V02-V04 (.1, .9), and V09.2), Coroner/Medical Examiner reports, hospital medical records, emergency medical service reports, and other state records. To be included in FARS, a crash must involve a motor vehicle traveling on a trafficway customarily open to the public, and must result in the death of an occupant of a vehicle or a nonoccupant within 30 days of the crash. FARS data do not include pedestrian deaths on private roadways, such as driveways. Driveways are a common location for pedestrian deaths for pedestrians aged 0-2 years.
Since FARS uses additional information in determining the cause of death and only includes deaths that occurred within 30 days of the crash, data from FARS may not be directly comparable to data published in National Vital Statistics Reports.