Research Papers

Good and Bad Driving Practices: Are They Clustered or Independent?

Filename 6C-Faw_FP_Good-and-Bad-Driving-Practices-Are-They-Clustered-Together-or-Unrelated.pdf
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Date added June 16, 2014
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Category 2014 CMRSC XXIV Vancouver
Tags Research and Evaluation, Session 6C
Author/Auteur Harold Faw
Stream/Volet Research and Evaluation

Slidedeck Presentation

6C Faw_Good and Bad Driving Practices Are They Clustered Together or Unrelated

Abstract

Much of a vehicle driver’s activity is governed by well-practiced responses, both good and bad. The
purpose of the present research was to investigate the question of whether these habitual behaviors
occur independently of one another, or are clustered in groups such that a person who engages in one
of them often demonstrates several others as well. It was based mainly on online survey data,
comprising 219 drivers’ responses to the first survey, and 166 drivers’ responses to the second survey.
These data were complemented by directly observing one selected pair of driving behaviors for 755
drivers. Results of the first survey showed that the twelve good behaviors examined were all judged to
be very important, that these ratings were correlated as expected with various driving styles, and that
their rated importance correlated significantly with one another. Factor analysis confirmed that these
ratings of importance fell into two clusters. In the second survey, which included several unsafe
behaviors as well, mean ratings of the responses of other drivers to these various actions were spread
from very positive to very negative, and drivers’ self-professed actions correlated with these rated
responses positively and in most cases significantly. However, neither correlational analysis nor factor
analysis demonstrated that drivers’ self-confessed engagement in each of these activities were
substantially linked, possibly due to measurement flaws. Self-assessment of driving competence and
open-ended descriptions of what characterizes a good driver confirmed that nearly all drivers see
themselves as at or above the average, and that good drivers are perceived as focused on the task of
driving and considerate of others. Observations of the co-occurrence of one pair of behaviors showed
that these were significantly related. Implications and future directions were discussed.

Harold Faw