The results of the study led by Bridie Scott-Parker, from QUT’s Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety — Queensland (CARRS-Q), have been published in the international journal Injury Prevention.
Mrs Scott-Parker said the study of more than 760 young drivers, who were on their provisional licence, found anxiety and depression accounted for 8.5 per cent of the risky driving behaviour reported by these young adults.
“The association was greater in women than in men, with 9.5 per cent being explained by psychological distress in women compared with 6.7 per cent in men,” Mrs Scott-Parker said.
“We already know that psychological distress, such as anxiety and depression, has been linked to risky behaviour in adolescents including unprotected sex, smoking and high alcohol consumption.
“What this study sought to do was look at whether or not psychological distress could also be linked to risky driving behaviours in young people, such as speeding, not wearing a seat belt and using a mobile phone while at the wheel.”
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