It's called a Cost Benefit Analysis. It doesn't really put a monetary value on a human life, however, it's a little more complex than that.
Whenever there is an accident, there are costs associated with clearing the scene, investigating the accident, paramedical treatment, police involvement, etc. The local highway authority will produce a set of figure which detail how much, on average, a typical accident of a given severity level will cost. In Britain, accidents are graded into:
- Material Damage
- Slight injury
- Severe injury
I can't remember the exact monetary numbers off hand, but there is a huge leap in cost when fatalities are involved. This is one of the reasons why traffic engineers want to slow down the traffic when people are around. The chances of being killed versus being injured when struck by a car go through the roof if the car is going faster than about 20mph.
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