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Parental influence on adolescent compliance with graduated driver licensing conditions and crashes as a restricted licensed driver: New Zealand Drivers Study

  • Brookland, Rebecca
  • Begg, Dorothy
  • Langley, John
  • Ameratunga, Shanthi
Published Article
Accident Analysis & Prevention
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2013
Accepted Date
Jun 09, 2013
DOI: 10.1016/j.aap.2013.06.034


AimTo examine the influence of parental knowledge of, and support for graduated driver licensing (GDL) conditions, parental management of adolescent driving and parental driving behaviour on adolescent compliance with GDL conditions and crashes as a restricted licence driver. MethodThis research was part of the New Zealand Drivers Study (NZDS), a prospective cohort study of 3992 newly licensed car drivers. NZDS participants were recruited at the learner licence stage, with follow-up aligned with the GDL stages. At the restricted licence stage 1200 parents of NZDS adolescents, aged 15–17 years at learner licensure, were recruited and completed interviews. 895 of these adolescents progressed to their full licence and completed the full licence interview. These 895 parent–adolescent pairs were the study population in this research. Topics examined included parental knowledge of, and support for GDL conditions, management of adolescent driving (driving rules, adolescent vehicle ownership, delaying licensure), and their own driving behaviours. Outcomes examined were adolescent compliance with GDL restricted licence conditions (night-time and passenger), and crashes as a driver during the restricted licence stage. ResultsAfter controlling for other variables, factors independently associated with adolescent low compliance with GDL conditions were: low parental knowledge of conditions, parents’ implementing few driving rules, adolescent vehicle ownership, and parent crash involvement. Factors independently associated with adolescents being a crash involved driver were: parents’ actively delaying licensure, adolescent vehicle ownership, and parent crash involvement. ConclusionThere is increasing recognition of the importance of parental involvement in adolescent driving. The results show that parents are influential in determining adolescent compliance with GDL and risk of crash. Parents can have considerable positive influence on their adolescent's driving through ensuring compliance with the components of GDL, limiting vehicle ownership and by modelling safe driving behaviours.

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