Young novice drivers and the risky behaviours of parents and friends during the Provisional (intermediate) licence phase: A brief report

  • Bridie Scott-Parker, Barry Watson, Mark J. King, Melissa K. Hyde
  • Accident Analysis & Prevention, August 2014, Elsevier
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.aap.2013.11.016

Influences on young novice drivers during the provisional licence phase

What is it about?

Young novice drivers remain at increased risk of road crash, and injury in that road crash, due to a combination of driving inexperience and developmental issues. Relatedly, parents and friends have been found to be influential on young driver behaviour. 378 drivers aged 17 to 25 years of age with a provisional 1 driver’s licence completed an online survey exploring their beliefs regarding their parents’ and their friends’ driving, and the extent to which they copy their parents’ and their friends’ driving.

Why is it important?

Our findings revealed that young drivers who reported that their father was a risky driver, that their friends were risky drivers, or that they copied the behaviour of their friends, reported more risky driving behaviour. For young males in particular, their driving behaviour was related to the risky behaviour of their father.


Dr Bridie Scott-Parker
University of the Sunshine Coast

Intervention efforts for risky young driver behaviour should go beyond targeting the young driver alone, rather they should target drivers of all ages. In particular, intervention targeting parents merits consideration, as do interventions targeting young drivers as a source of behaviour to be copied by their friends. In this way, positive impacts upon the behaviour of parents and friends is likely to improve the driving behaviour of young drivers.

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The following have contributed to this page: Dr Bridie Scott-Parker