Sensation seeking and peer passenger influence on risky driving among novice drivers in Udupi Taluk, India

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Clinical Epidemiology and Global Health


Background: Sensation Seeking is one of the complex behaviors among novice drivers, which leads to road traffic injuries. Globally, road traffic crashes are a leading cause of death among young people, the main cause of death among those who fall in the age group of 15–29 years. Road traffic injuries are currently estimated to be the ninth leading cause of death across all age groups globally and are predicted to become the seventh leading cause of death by 2030. As per the World Health Organization (WHO) report, low and middle-income countries lose approximately 3% of GDP as a result of road traffic crashes. Objective: To assess the sensation-seeking behavior among novice drivers in Udupi Taluk. Methodology: The cross-sectional study was conducted to assess the sensation-seeking behavior among novice drivers with an estimated sample size of 150. The study participants were selected by using the Sensation Seeking Scale (SSS) form V questionnaire developed by Zuckerman. The questionnaire includes 40 questions which are divided into four sub-scales which include boredom susceptibility, disinhibition, experience-seeking, thrill and adventure-seeking. Each sub-scale contains ten items and scoring is given with two options as High and Low. Data collected is analyzed by using Microsoft Excel, SPSS and presented as descriptives i.e., frequency and percentage. Results: The results were examined according to the levels of sensation seeking scale. Sensation seeking for boredom susceptibility is 22.3% (High), disinhibition is 27.27% (High), experience seeking is 28.6% (High), thrill and adventure-seeking is 60.6% (High). Cross-tabulating the questions with age, gender, education was statistically significant (p < 0.05) associated with risky driving behavior among novice drivers. Conclusion: Thus, this study reveals that most of the participants are showing a high percentage of thrill and adventure-seeking compared to the remaining three sub-scales, which calls for localized intervention targeting it.

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