A profile of taxi drivers' road safety attitudes and behaviours: Is safety important?
Rowland, Bevan D., Freeman, James E., Davey, Jeremy D., & Wishart, Darren E. (2007) A profile of taxi drivers' road safety attitudes and behaviours: Is safety important? In 3rd International Road Safety Conference, 29 - 30 November 2007, Perth, WA.
Crash data involving taxis indicates that such drivers are over represented in crashes and are one to two times more likely to be involved in a fatality crash. However, currently there is little gathered evidence regarding taxi driver’s attitudes and road safety perceptions and research has yet to examine the extent of this group’s engagement in aberrant driving behaviours. This study reports on the utilisation of abbreviated versions of the Manchester Driver Behaviour Questionnaire (DBQ), Driver Attitude Questionnaire (DAQ) and the Safety Climate Questionnaire (SCQ) to provide a profile of the self-reported attitudes and corresponding driving behaviours of a sample of Queensland taxi drivers (N = 182). Questionnaires were individually distributed to participants at a taxi company depot as well as taxi ranks both during the day and night shifts. Univariate analyses identified that taxi drivers were more likely to report engaging in aggressive driving acts than speeding violations, and believed speeding was more acceptable compared to drink driving, following too closely or engaging in risky overtaking manoeuvres. Importantly, bivariate analyses indicated that individuals who engaged in a higher level of aberrant driving behaviours (e.g., aggression & speeding) were also more likely to report other less safe driving attitudes. However, examination of factors related with demerit point loss revealed that the only factor significantly associated with receiving fines was taxi driving experience, as more inexperienced drivers were more likely to report incurring demerit points. In contrast to previous research, road exposure did not significantly influence taxi-related crash and traffic offence involvement in this sample. Taken together, the results indicate that some taxi drivers willingly admit to engaging in unsafe driving practices and thus road safety benefits may result from developing and implementing targeted interventions designed to improve work-related driving among this group. This paper will further outline the major findings of the study as well as highlight possible research avenues to improve both current knowledge and taxi operating practices.
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