Until now, young driver issues have been dealt with on the basis of what they ‘do’ that is unsafe. However, youth road safety is very little about what they do – it is almost entirely about how they think and how this thinking causes them to behave. New research into the group of drivers at highest risks on roads (risk-taking young males, or Driveaholics) has found that they can be challenged to reduce risk-taking behaviour and increase their safety without requiring further punishments or threats. This is achieved by a twofold procedure of showing them in a practical way that they are not bulletproof drivers, and then challenging them to confine risk-taking driving behaviours to safe environments. The more than 5000 young drivers who have completed this program have been found to be between 50 and 77% less likely to be involved in a collision into their first years of driving, and also have greatly reduced law infraction rates. This increase in safety is of great benefit to these young males, who are often exemplary drivers once they are older. It is also of great benefit to other road users, as risks reduce for all.
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