Risk Factors

The first few years that you are new drivers are the most dangerous and you will be at the highest risk of being involved in a serious crash.

There are many things you can to do to help reduce the risk.

  • There are the obvious things like making sure that you do not drive after drinking or taking drugs, always wearing your seatbelt and making sure that your passengers do as well, driving at an appropriate speed for the road conditions and not getting distracted by using your mobile phone.

Then there are some less obvious things that you can also do to reduce your risk of being in a collision.

  • Restrict the number of passengers that you have in the vehcile during the first six months or first year, The more passengers you allow in the car the higher the risk you are taking.
  • Up to 50% of crashes that happen in the wet involve young drivers, Make sure you consciously slow down in the rain or when the roads are wet.
  • The time of day that you drive can be a major risk factor, particularly regarding how serious the crash is. Most fatal collisions that involve young drivers happen between 10pm and 5am so when you first start driving try to avoid driving during these times.
  • Fatigue is a factor in many crashes with young drivers. As you move into a new period of independence after passing your test, you may find that the hours you are awake also increases. Agree with your parents the minimum numbers of hours of rest you will take before you drive particularly if it is a long journey or late at night. Your internal body clock (circadium rythmn) means that there will be times when you are naturally sleepy - to to avoid driving at these times (Typically between 2am and 6am is when many collisions occur due to fatigue).
  • If you are a young male drivers you form part of the group who are the most likely to be involved with a fatal pedestrian crash. Learn how to become an expert driver - plan ahead, anticipate the behaviour of other road users - don't try to be the fastest, but instead impress people by becoming the smoothest driver you can be.

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