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Effects of Defensive Vehicle Training on Novice Driver Safety, Phase III

Started: October, 2006 Ended: September, 2011 Project ID #4W1060 Status: Completed


Conduct a follow-up evaluation of the effects of advanced defensive driving programs on novice drivers.


Research shows that drivers under age 19 have a crash rate four times that of the general driving population with the highest accident rate experienced within two years of receiving the driver’s license. Therefore, it could be assumed there is a decrease in crash rates with experience. WTI has begun a controlled study designed to validate training in advanced vehicle handling for novice drivers. In the first of three phases, researchers analyzed accident records for young Montana drivers and designed a defensive driving curriculum to address the most common risks. In Phase Two, WTI and the Office of Public Instruction recruited approximately four hundred young drivers in central Montana to take part in the actual presentation of training to the young drivers. Of the teens who are graduates of school-sponsored driver education, half received an intervention approximately six months after they took driver education. The intervention involved a one-day classroom and behind-the-wheel workshop. Students received training in the key habits that address the greatest number of driving crashes teens in Montana experience, and personalized suggestions on how to improve their driving abilities. Students also completed a survey of demographic and driving experience information. For this project (Phase Three), all the teens will be tracked for four years following the project to determine the driving history comparisons of the control group to those who received the intervention. Reported accidents, violations and driving experience will be compared.


Files & Documents

Sponsors & Partners

  • Research and Innovation Technology Administration (RITA) Sponsor

Part of: Safety and Operations

Project Tagged In: advanced driver training, Novice drivers

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