Accompanied Driving From Age 17 – Process Evaluation of the Nationwide Model Scheme
ABSTRACT In the process evaluation 3,780 participants in the pilot scheme were interviewed up to four times during their accompanied driving in relation to different aspects of the measurement implementation. 1,735 adults accompanying the novice drivers were also questioned once.
The young people’s and adults’ reasons for participating in the pilot scheme revealed that accompanied driving as part of young driver preparation could be well integrated into the age-specific phase of the young drivers’ lives. Overall the findings indicate easy access to the model and high level of practical applicability.
On days with accompanied drives the young people covered an average daily mileage of 32.4 km (median: 24.0 km). Looking at a month they covered a projected monthly mileage of 318.5 km. The average period of accompanied driving lasted about eight months. During this time the young drivers drove approx. 2,400 km. Taking the full length of twelve months of accompanied driving, the projected mileage was 3,800 km.
The main reasons for driving with an attendant were private journeys (family business, visits), household chores and rides to school / training.
In terms of the interaction between the young drivers and the accompanying adults, a lot of findings draw the picture of an adequate role interpretation and role practice in the sense of constructive co-operation between the young driver and the attendant during the practical acquisition of driving experience.
In the course of the accompanied driving period, there was a clear decrease in the number of insecure novice drivers. This is the result of the subjectively perceived increase in driving experience during the accompanied period of time.
Accidents, traffic violations and tickets during accompanied driving were only reported to a limited extent by the police. This shows that exercising the pilot scheme meets the necessary road safety demands to a high degree.
The significant increase in practical driving preparation using the “Accompanied Driving From Age 17” has led to a structural change in the preparation of novice drivers in Germany. Nevertheless, in terms of the duration of the accompanied driving and the amount of kilometres travelled, the given possibilities of the pilot scheme do not yet appear to have been fully utilised. Both aspects may prove to be the subject of future efforts to improve the model.
Alongside greater utilisation of the original potential of the measure, that is prolonged accumulation of driving practice, a reasonable combination of the accompanied driving scheme with other measures leading to lower accident risks among novice drivers in the context of an integrated system of novice driver preparation in Germany may be advisable.