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Cross-cultural differences in driving skills: A comparison of six countries

2006-09-01
Özkan, Türker
LAJUNEN, TIMO JUHANI
El. Chliaoutakis, Joannes
PARKER, D
SUMMALA, H
The first aim of the present study was to investigate the applicability of the two-factor structure (perceptual-motor skills by 11 items, e.g., "fluent driving"; safety skills by 9 items, e.g., "conforming to the speed limits") of the Driver Skill Inventory (DST) among British, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Iranian, and Turkish drivers. It was also hypothesized that the combination of self reported high ratings of perceptual-motor skills and low ratings of safety skills creates a serious risk for dangerous driving and road accident involvement. The second aim of this study was, therefore, to investigate this asymmetric relationship between perceptual-motor and safety skills in traffic penalties and accident involvement. Two hundred and forty two drivers were chosen from each of the six countries, matched for age and sex. The results of exploratory factor analyses together with target rotation showed that the two-factor structure of DST found in "safe" Northern and Western European countries were highly congruent. However, the safety skills factor of DST in Greece, Iran, and Turkey was relatively incongruent in spite of high factor similarity found in perceptual-motor skills. The asymmetric relationship between perceptual-motor and safety skills on traffic penalties was found in Finland and Turkey. A negative relationship between safety skills and the number of accidents was found both in Greece and Iran while a positive relationship between perceptual-motor skills and the number of accidents was found only in Iran.