Young driver restrictions - does the evidence support them?

Blackman, Ross, Cheffins, Tracy, Veitch, Craig, and O'Connor, Teresa (2008) Young driver restrictions - does the evidence support them? Australian Journal of Rural Health, 16 (6). pp. 332-337.

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Objective: To assess the suitability of Queensland's graduated licensing system in the context of rural and remote Queensland.

Design: Age-based comparison of crash data collected by the Rural and Remote Road Safety Study (RRRSS).

Setting: Rural and remote North Queensland.

Participants: A total of 367 vehicle controllers aged 16 years or over hospitalised at Townsville, Cairns or Mount Isa for at least 24 hours, or killed, as a result of a vehicle crash.

Measurements: Specific RRRSS variables are assessed in relation to Queensland's graduated licensing program, including rates of unlicensed driving/riding, late night crashes, crashes with multiple passengers, contributing factors in crashes and vehicle types involved.

Results: While people between 16 and 24 years of age comprise 16% of the target population, 25% of crashes meeting RRRSS criteria involved a vehicle controller in that age group. 12.8% of all cases involved an unlicensed driver/rider, within which 66% were below 25 years of age. Young drivers/riders were represented in 50% of crashes occurring between 11:00 p.m. and 5:00 a.m., and 33% of crashes in vehicles with multiple passengers. Motorcyclists represented about 40% of cases in both age groups. There were no significant differences between age groups in vehicle types used, or circumstances that contributed to crashes.

Conclusions: The general overrepresentation of young drivers/riders in rural and remote North Queensland supports tailored interventions, such as graduated licensing. However, while some measures in the legislation are well supported, problems surrounding unlicensed driving/riding might be exacerbated.

Item ID: 10417
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1440-1584
Keywords: graduated licensing; remote; risk; road safety; rural
Date Deposited: 30 Apr 2010 06:13
FoR Codes: 11 MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES > 1117 Public Health and Health Services > 111716 Preventive Medicine @ 100%
SEO Codes: 88 TRANSPORT > 8801 Ground Transport > 880109 Road Safety @ 100%
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