Research & Resources

Shared and Distinct Parental Influences on Teen Impaired Driving in Rural and Suburban Contexts: A Mixed Methods Study of Young Drivers

Researchers in this study explored shared and distinct parental influences on rural and suburban adolescents’ riding with an impaired driver (RWI) and driving while impaired (DWI) behaviors during high school. Participants in the NEXT Generation Health Study (NEXT) were classified into four RWI/DWI trajectory classes (Abstainer, Escalator, Decliner, or Persister) that described patterns of RWI/DWI from high school to emerging adulthood. An in-depth follow-up qualitative interview was conducted with a purposeful selection of participants from each trajectory class between March and September 2020. Imposition of a curfew was a shared parental influence in rural and suburban contexts. Unique to the rural context, parent modeling of RWI/DWI was described as normative and occurring since childhood. The researchers suggested that prevention interventions targeting parent RWI/DWI might reduce their children’s risk for RWI/DWI among rural adolescents.

This paper, “Shared and distinct parental influences on teen impaired driving in rural and suburban contexts: A mixed methods study of young drivers,” was funded by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA) and published in the journal Accident analysis & prevention.

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