DIMENSIONS OF DRIVING CULTURE
 
Glendon, I. and Sutton, D., Griffith University, Australia
 
The study describes an empirical analysis of driving behaviour based upon over 2,700 cases from Queensland, Australia. Data were gathered from in- car coordinated video and audio recording sequences along a stretch of motorway with varying speed limits and number of lanes available for driving. Variables for which data were available included vehicle type, age and other characteristics, driver age and gender, and passenger characteristics. Data were also collected on a range of violations and 'discourtesies', including lane position, speed, 'tailgating', hand position, and mobile 'phone use. Following a pilot run, 20 one-hour data collection runs were completed, sampling equally in both directions and across days of the week during daylight hours. Data analysis was facilitated by the use of a computerised qualitative analysis system, which incorporates video sequences on-screen for coding prior to downloading for quantitative analysis on SPSS. The research seeks to build a picture of the dimensions of driving culture within a region or jurisdiction by establishing a base pattern of relevant measures. Analysis focuses upon vehicle and driver characteristics, their impact upon driving behaviours, including identified violations. The notion of 'violation tolerance' within a jurisdiction is tentatively introduced as a possible link between driving culture dimensions and accident outcomes.