Naturalistic teenage driving study: Findings and lessons learned

Bruce G. Simons-Morton, Sheila G. Klauer, Marie Claude Ouimet, Feng Guo, Paul S. Albert, Suzanne E. Lee, Johnathon P. Ehsani, Anuj K. Pradhan, Thomas A. Dingus

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction This paper summarizes the findings on novice teenage driving outcomes (e.g., crashes and risky driving behaviors) from the Naturalistic Teenage Driving Study. Method Survey and driving data from a data acquisition system (global positioning system, accelerometers, cameras) were collected from 42 newly licensed teenage drivers and their parents during the first 18 months of teenage licensure; stress responsivity was also measured in teenagers. Result Overall teenage crash and near-crash (CNC) rates declined over time, but were > 4 times higher among teenagers than adults. Contributing factors to teenage CNC rates included secondary task engagement (e.g., distraction), kinematic risky driving, low stress responsivity, and risky social norms. Conclusions The data support the contention that the high novice teenage CNC risk is due both to inexperience and risky driving behavior, particularly kinematic risky driving and secondary task engagement. Practical Applications Graduated driver licensing policy and other prevention efforts should focus on kinematic risky driving, secondary task engagement, and risky social norms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)41.e29-44
JournalJournal of Safety Research
StatePublished - Sep 1 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • Accidents
  • Adolescence
  • Expertise
  • Kinematic
  • Risk taking
  • Speeding

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality


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