Young people who drink and drive have a relatively higher risk of crash involvement for all breath alcohol concentration (BrAC) ranges. However, not all aspects of the effect of alcohol consumption on the behavior of young drivers have been sufficiently addressed—especially the differentiated effect of alcohol on their driving performance. The behavior of young drivers under the influence of alcohol is explored within this research in a driving simulator experiment in which participants were subjected to a common predefined dose of alcohol consumption. Comparing behavior before and after consumption as well as across individuals and different BrAC levels allows for useful insights into driver behavior, as well as for suggestions on policy interventions. Results indicate strong differences in individuals, mainly because of differentiated driving experience and baseline driving skills. The results also designate reaction time and speeding as the most robust alcohol impairment indicators that affect driver choices directly. Most important, results suggest that the BrAC-speed curve across individuals is not monotonic over all BrAC intervals.
|Tags||alcohol, driver behaviour, simulator, young drivers|