ARSRPE Conference Paper Database

Road safety messages tailored for young adults: Using the Internet and encouraging protective passenger behaviour

Buckley, Lisa

Education

2011

Road safety messages tailored for young adults: Using the Internet and encouraging protective passenger behaviour (Buckley, Chapman & Sheehan) Young drivers are at higher risk of crashes than other drivers when carrying passengers (Chen et al., 2000). Graduated Driver Licensing has demonstrated effectiveness in reducing fatalities however there is considerable potential for additional strategies to complement the approach. A survey with 276 young adults (aged 17-25 years, 64% females) was conducted to examine the potential and importance of strategies that are delivered via the Internet and potential strategies for passengers. Strategies delivered via the Internet represent opportunity for widespread dissemination and greater reach to young people at times convenient to them. The current study found some significant differences between males and females with regard to ways the Internet is used to obtain road safety information and the components valued in trusted road safety sites. There were also significant differences between males and females on the kinds of strategies used as passengers to promote driver safety and the context in which it occurred, with females tending to take more proactive strategies than males. In sum, young people see value in Internet delivery for passenger safety information (80% agreed/ strongly agreed) and more than 90% thought it was important to intervene while a passenger of a risky driver. Thus tailoring Internet road safety strategies to young people may differ for males and females however there is considerable potential for a passenger focus in strategies aimed at reducing young driver crashes.