Trends and subgroup differences in transportation-related risk and safety behaviors among high school students, 1991-1997

Division of Adolescent and School Health, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia, 30341, USA.
Journal of Adolescent Health (Impact Factor: 3.61). 04/2001; 28(3):228-34. DOI: 10.1016/S1054-139X(00)00177-4
Source: PubMed


To examine national trends in transportation-related injury risk and safety behaviors among U.S. high school students.
To examine secular trends in riding with a driver who had been drinking, driving after drinking, and using seat belts, bicycle helmets, and motorcycle helmets, we used logistic regression to analyze data from national Youth Risk Behavior Surveys (YRBS) conducted in 1991, 1993, 1995, and 1997. The YRBS is a self-administered, anonymous survey that uses a national probability sample of U.S. students in public and private schools from grades 9-12 (N = 55,734 for all years combined).
The percentages of students who rode with a driver who had been drinking (36.6% in 1997), drove after drinking alcohol (16.9% in 1997), always wore seat belts (33.2% in 1997), and always wore a motorcycle helmet when riding a motorcycle (45.0% in 1997) remained stable between 1991 and 1997. From 1991 to 1997, the percentage of bicycle riders who always wore a helmet when bicycling showed a small but statistically significant increase (1.1% in 1991 to 3.8% in 1997), but helmet use remained low.
Many young people place themselves at unnecessary risk for motor vehicle- and bicycle-related crash injuries and fatalities. Improved motor vehicle- and bicycle-related injury prevention strategies are needed that specifically target adolescents.

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    • "We controlled for sex in all our models because sex differences are typically found in risky driving research (Jackson, Sher, Cooper, & Wood, 2002). Male teenagers are more likely than females to ride in a car with a driver who has been drinking (Everett et al., 2001) and to engage in high-risk driving influences (Elliott, Shope, Raghunathan, & Waller, 2006). We did not study sex differences because this was not a focus of an already somewhat complicated and innovative cascade analysis approach. "
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