The reality of teenage driving: The results of a driving educational experience for teens in the juvenile court system

In an attempt to modify high-risk driving behavior among adolescents who are first-time driving offenders, Injury Free Coalition for Kids-Worcester and the Worcester Juvenile Court in Massachusetts collaborated on the development of a interactive multimodality intervention called the Reality Intensive Driver Education (Teen RIDE). This full-day program at a Level 1 pediatric trauma center provides a realistic exposure to the consequences of risky driving behaviors. This paper evaluates the results of the program by comparing the driving offense recidivism rates for Teen RIDE participants versus a comparison group (CG). The intervention group (IG) consisted of teenagers between 13 -17 years old who had been arrested for the first time for a serious driving offense and were sentenced by a Worcester Juvenile Court Judge or Magistrate to mandatory attendance at the Teen RIDE program. Each participant in the IG completed the program and was tracked for driving reoffenses for 6 months after completion of the course. The CG consisted of first-time driving offenders that had no exposure to the Teen RIDE program. The CG was from a locale 60 miles away from Worcester, but was matched with the IG with respect to age, sex, and offense type. Each CG member was also tracked for 6 months after arrest. The results show that the recidivism rate for Teen RIDE participants 6 months after the course was 6%. No participants reoffended more than once. The CG, in contrast, showed a recidivism rate of 56% six months after the arrest. Fourteen percent had more than one reoffense. These findings indicate that the Teen RIDE program is effective in exposing teenagers to the consequences of risky driving behaviors and that program participants are significantly less likely to reoffend within a 6-month timeframe. Limitations of the study are discussed.


  • English

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01456708
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 11 2012 11:56AM