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Different factors predict different risky driving behaviours : a challenge to the assumed generalizability of prediction and countermeasure Fernandes, Ralston ; Soames Job, RF

By: Publication details: Sydney 2003Description: 9 sSubject(s): Online resources: Notes: Road Safety Research, Policing and Education Conference Conference Proceedings, Sydney, 2003 Abstract: It has been shown repeatedly that adolescents are over-represented in crashes among all classes of road user, compared with other age groups. Causation of this over-representation is complex, with many different factors implicated from both basic and applied research perspectives. Ultimately, applications of theories of human behaviour must guide road safety studies of road user behaviour, and are critical to practical outcomes in addressing the problem of road trauma. While there is a gamut of applied research on road safety, it is typically focused on single problems (e.g. drink-driving or speeding). The present study begins the process of comparing factors involved in various problem behaviours in relation to attitudes across various risky driving behaviours. Study 1 (N=109) examined a range of possible predictors of risky driving, and investigated the nature of attitudes to risk taking for young drivers. The aim of Study 1 was to investigate whether predictive factors for various risky driving behaviours differed from behaviour to behaviour (e.g. drink-driving vs. speeding vs. non-use of seat belts). Results illustrated that different risky driving behaviours were predicted by different factors (e.g. speeding was predicted by authority rebellion, while drink driving was predicted by sensation seeking and optimism bias). These results are inconsistent with the cherished assumption in the field that the predictive factors of one risky driving behaviour can be generalized to another. Study 2 (N=115) examined the generalizability of the results from a student sample to the general driving population. Again, the common practical assumption of generalization from university students to the general population was not supported in several cases. Overall, the results clearly illustrate that different factors predict different risky driving behaviours, and future research must now focus on a multi-factor framework for each specific risky driving behaviour, rather than assuming generalizability from one risky behaviour to another.
Item type: Reports, conferences, monographs
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Road Safety Research, Policing and Education Conference Conference Proceedings, Sydney, 2003

It has been shown repeatedly that adolescents are over-represented in crashes among all classes of road user, compared with other age groups. Causation of this over-representation is complex, with many different factors implicated from both basic and applied research perspectives. Ultimately, applications of theories of human behaviour must guide road safety studies of road user behaviour, and are critical to practical outcomes in addressing the problem of road trauma. While there is a gamut of applied research on road safety, it is typically focused on single problems (e.g. drink-driving or speeding). The present study begins the process of comparing factors involved in various problem behaviours in relation to attitudes across various risky driving behaviours. Study 1 (N=109) examined a range of possible predictors of risky driving, and investigated the nature of attitudes to risk taking for young drivers. The aim of Study 1 was to investigate whether predictive factors for various risky driving behaviours differed from behaviour to behaviour (e.g. drink-driving vs. speeding vs. non-use of seat belts). Results illustrated that different risky driving behaviours were predicted by different factors (e.g. speeding was predicted by authority rebellion, while drink driving was predicted by sensation seeking and optimism bias). These results are inconsistent with the cherished assumption in the field that the predictive factors of one risky driving behaviour can be generalized to another. Study 2 (N=115) examined the generalizability of the results from a student sample to the general driving population. Again, the common practical assumption of generalization from university students to the general population was not supported in several cases. Overall, the results clearly illustrate that different factors predict different risky driving behaviours, and future research must now focus on a multi-factor framework for each specific risky driving behaviour, rather than assuming generalizability from one risky behaviour to another.

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