Individual differences |
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Drivers, those in control of motor vehicles, particularly automobiles, have been studied extensively by psychologists in order to understand driver behavior and reduce motor traffic accidents through for example driver education programs and other attempts to improve highway safety.
Inexperienced drivers are the most likely to be involved in a car crash, and there is also a correlation with young drivers . Reasons suggested for this include inexperience combined with over-confidence, peer pressure, a desire to show off, and even neurological development arguments . In addition most serious collisions occur at night and when the car has multiple occupants . This has led to the following proposals:
- A curfew imposed on young drivers to prevent them driving at night.
- Requiring an experienced supervisor to chaperone the less experienced driver.
- Forbidding the carrying of passengers.
- Zero alcohol tolerance.
- Compulsory advanced driving courses.
- Vehicle restrictions (eg. 'high performance' vehicles)
- Requiring a sign placed on the back of the vehicle to notify other drivers of a less-experienced individual in the driver's seat.
Some countries or states have already implemented some of these ideas. This increased risk for the young is known to the insurance companies, and premiums sometimes reflect that; however, very high premiums for young drivers do not seem to have had a significant impact on the crash statistics, suggesting that these drivers simply accept the high premiums as part of the "on road" costs of mobility or that age is not a factor in driver recklessness/skill.