Knowledge and Resource Hub
22 March 2019

Stability and change in risky driving from the late teens to the late twenties

This research examined patterns of risky driving from the late teens to the late twenties; and identified factors associated with persistence and change in risky driving tendencies. Rates of risky driving remained fairly stable between the ages of 19-20 and 23-24 years, but had significantly decreased by 27-28 years. While there was a general trend for levels of risky driving to decrease, considerable variability was found in the risky driving patterns of individuals over this period. Antisocial behaviour appeared to be strongly linked to persistence and change in risky driving, adding support to the view that risky driving may form part of a broader underlying propensity to engage in problem behaviour/s. Low social skills were associated with an increasing propensity for risky driving among some young drivers. Binge drinking, gender, and parental status also differentiated between drivers who exhibited different across-time patterns of risky driving. Overall the research suggests that risky drivers are not identical, so the factors that underlie their behaviour may differ.