An examination of the factors that influence drivers’ willingness to use hand-held mobile phones

Rozario, Mark, Lewis, Ioni, & White, Katherine M. (2010) An examination of the factors that influence drivers’ willingness to use hand-held mobile phones. Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 13(6), pp. 365-376.

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Hand-held mobile phone use while driving is illegal throughout Australia yet many drivers persist with this behaviour. This study aims to understand the internal, driver-related and external, situational-related factors influencing drivers’ willingness to use a hand-held mobile phone while driving. Sampling 160 university students, this study utilised the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) to examine a range of belief-based constructs. Additionally, drivers’ personality traits of neuroticism and extroversion were measured with the Neuroticism Extroversion Openness-Five Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI). In relation to the external, situational-related factors, four different driving-related scenarios, which were intended to evoke differing levels of drivers’ reported stress, were devised for the study and manipulated drivers’ time urgency (low versus high) and passenger presence (alone versus with friends). In these scenarios, drivers’ willingness to use a mobile phone in general was measured. Hierarchical regression analyses across the four different driving scenarios found that, overall, the TPB components significantly accounted for drivers’ willingness to use a mobile phone above and beyond the demographic variables. Subjective norms, however, was only a significant predictor of drivers’ willingness in situations where the drivers were driving alone. Generally, neuroticism and extroversion did not significantly predict drivers’ willingness above and beyond the TPB and demographic variables. Overall, the findings broaden our understanding of the internal and external factors influencing drivers’ willingness to use a hand-held mobile phone while driving despite the illegality of this behaviour. The findings may have important practical implications in terms of better informing road safety campaigns targeting drivers’ mobile phone use which, in turn, may contribute to a reduction in the extent that mobile phone use contributes to road crashes.

Impact and interest:

10 citations in Scopus
10 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 34365
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Additional URLs:
Keywords: Mobile Phone Use While Driving, Theory of Planned Behaviour, Behavioural Willingness
DOI: 10.1016/j.trf.2010.07.002
ISSN: 1369-8478
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > Research Centres > Centre for Health Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Psychology & Counselling
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd All rights reserved.
Deposited On: 07 Sep 2010 01:39
Last Modified: 29 Feb 2012 14:18

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