Young driver research: Where are we now? What do we still need to know?
In Australian jurisdictions and developed countries worldwide, young, novice drivers represent only a minor proportion of the licensed population yet are substantially more likely to be involved in road crashes, fatalities and injuries than older, more experienced drivers. During 2002-2004, a wealth of national and international research has been undertaken to examine many of the issues that contribute to this phenomenon, including young driver characteristics, driving and crash patterns, skill development, education/training and licensing/assessment, and the role of parents, peers, passengers and ITS developments. While valuable advances have been made, there are still some gaps in our knowledge and understanding. The present research collates recent findings to build an integrated profile of young driver issues and, in doing so, to highlight the gaps requiring further investigation. It is in the form of a research summary that provides an overview of much of what is known to date, what is currently under investigation and what still needs to be done. This can provide essential information for road safety researchers and agencies wishing to direct future research and countermeasure developments towards the young driver missing links in order to reduce their over-involvement in road trauma.