MPC Research Reports
Traffic safety is a widespread social concern. Tackling the problem requires understanding the people who are driving. This includes information about driver behavior, but also about perceptions these drivers hold regarding their driving. North Dakota crash data points at a specific group of drivers as a problem group. Male drivers ages 18 to 34 have a high incidence of crash occurrences in the state. This population is selected based on data showing the majority of crashes and crash-related fatalities occur in this population. Specific traffic safety issues, seat belt use, and impaired driving are major concerns. The answer seems simple but the problem lies in the question, "How can we change driving behaviors to reduce or stop the resulting tragedies?" Data is needed to answer this crucial question. Engaging North Dakota drivers in traffic safety surveys and focus groups will enable the gathering of information that can be condensed into a tool to be used for program planning and countermeasure selection decisions. What will give the DOT the most "bang for the buck" in traffic safety education, policies, and investment for target populations?