This monograph is composed of excerpts from FORS CR179 Women Behind the Wheel: Driver Behaviour and Road Crash Involvement, and focuses on young driver behaviour.
The relevance of gender to road safety has long been recognised and it has been the contribution of male drivers to fatal and serious crashes which has, to date, attracted the most attention. Historically, men have tended to be overrepresented in road crash fatalities. In 1996, 1,413 men were killed on Australian roads compared with 564 women.
It is also true that male drivers are more likely to be killed than female drivers for every kilometre travelled. According to FORS Monograph 12, there were 0.74 male driver deaths and 0.47 female driver deaths per 100 million vehicle kilometres travelled.
While male drivers may be more at risk of death on the road, female drivers have a higher risk of sustaining serious injury. As noted in the FORS Monograph, there were 8.74 female driver admissions to hospital as a result of a road crash for every 100 million kilometres travelled compared to 7.24 admissions of male drivers. An increase in risk for female drivers has been noted in the United States of America.
It appears that the issue of female drivers is an emerging concern for road safety.
They have a higher level of risk of hospital admission by distance travelled and, due to increased travel, they represent a growing proportion of road casualties. Since 1985, kilometres driven by female drivers have increased by 43.2% compared with an increase in travel of 6.7% by male drivers.
Type: Research and Analysis Report
Sub Type: Pre-ATSB (FORS) Monograph
Topics: Gender, Young drivers
Publication Date: 01/01/98