Can adolescent drivers' motor vehicle crash risk be reduced by pre-licensure intervention?

Jessica H. Mirman, Allison E. Curry, Michael R. Elliott, Leann Long, Melissa R. Pfeiffer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Although motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for adolescents, there is a scarcity of research addressing adolescents' lack of pre-licensure practical driving experience, which is theorized to increase their post-licensure crash risk.

Utilizing police-reported crashes and survey data from a randomized and quasi-randomized trial (n = 458 adolescents, 16 or 17 years of age at enrollment), the impact of a parent-directed supervised practice driving intervention and a comprehensive on-road driving assessment (ODA) with feedback was evaluated on adolescent drivers' motor vehicle crashes involvement.

Compared with the control condition, a nonsignificant 20% relative reduction in risk was observed for the parent-directed intervention: adjusted hazard ratio  = .80 (95% confidence interval [CI] .44, 1.43); the unadjusted absolute risk reduction was 1.1% (95% CI −4.4, 7.1). Exposure to the ODA resulted in an 53% relative reduction of risk: adjusted hazard ratio  = .47 (95% CI .24, .91); the unadjusted absolute risk reduction was 5.4% (95% CI −.3, 10.7).

Comprehensive ODA might be protective for adolescents; however, additional research is needed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-348
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health
Issue number3
Early online date7 Dec 2017
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018


  • motor vehicle crashes
  • graduated driver licensing
  • teen drivers
  • adolescence
  • expertise


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