“Teaching them a lesson?” : a qualitative exploration of underlying motivations for driver aggression
Lennon, Alexia J. & Watson, Barry C. (2011) “Teaching them a lesson?” : a qualitative exploration of underlying motivations for driver aggression. Accident Analysis and Prevention, 43(6), pp. 2200-2208.
Aggressive driving is increasingly a concern for drivers in highly motorised countries. However, the role of driver intent in this behaviour is problematic and there is little research on driver cognitions in relation to aggressive driving incidents. In addition, while drivers who admit to behaving aggressively on the road also frequently report being recipients of similar behaviours, little is known about the relationship between perpetration and victimisation or about how road incidents escalate into the more serious events that feature in capture media attention. The current study used qualitative interviews to explore driver cognitions and underlying motivations for aggressive behaviours on the road. A total of 30 drivers aged 18-49 years were interviewed about their experiences with aggressive driving. A key theme identified in responses was driver aggression as an attempt to manage or modify the behaviour of other road users. Two subthemes were identified and appeared related to separate motivations for aggressive responses: ‘teaching them a lesson’ referred to situations where respondents intended to convey criticism or disapproval, usually of unintended behaviours by the other driver, and thus encourage self-correction; and ‘justified retaliation’ which referred to situations where respondents perceived deliberate intent on the part of the other driver and responded aggressively in return. Mildly aggressive driver behaviour appears to be common. Moreover such behaviour has a sufficiently negative impact on other drivers that it may be worth addressing because of its potential for triggering retaliation in kind or escalation of aggression, thus compromising safety.
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|Item Type:||Journal Article|
|Keywords:||aggressive driving, interviews, psychological motivation, qualitative research|
|Subjects:||Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > COMMERCE MANAGEMENT TOURISM AND SERVICES (150000) > TRANSPORTATION AND FREIGHT SERVICES (150700) > Road Transportation and Freight Services (150703)|
|Divisions:||Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)|
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 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.|
|Deposited On:||27 Jul 2011 16:51|
|Last Modified:||31 Aug 2011 02:30|
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