Driving Behaviors

Risky driving behaviors may cause those behind the wheel to make common errors that can lead to serious crashes. Unsafe or risky driving behaviors include aggressive driving (speeding, failure to obey a traffic control device, not yielding right-of-way, improper lane changing or passing, and following too closely), distracted driving (cell phone use while driving, drowsy driving, and inattention from other distractions), alcohol-involved driving, and unlicensed driving.  Drivers who do not wear a seat belt often engage in other risky behaviors that can increase the likelihood of crashing and being injured in a crash. 

New Jersey is taking a people-focused approach to encourage safe driving behaviors with the NJ-SHO Data Dashboard. This novel data linkage allows us to compare crash rates and crash outcomes based on the experience of drivers involved in crashes with various risky driving behaviors. 

Reducing these risky driving behaviors in NJ is a key way to achieve safer roads for all. The Safe System Approach encourages shared responsibility among road users, transportation planners, and safety advocates to reduce deaths and serious injuries from crashes. This approach encourages drivers to obey traffic safety laws through education and enforcement. However, because humans will inevitably make mistakes, the design of vehicles and roads can be modified to encourage the decision to drive safely every time we get behind the wheel. 

risky driving behaviors to avoid


By sharing the communities where these crash-involved drivers live and other characteristics about them, the NJ-SHO Data Dashboard can help traffic safety organizations better understand these drivers so that effective strategies can be implemented to encourage safe driving behaviors. These strategies may include outreach and education programs, as well as other efforts, such as traffic calming strategies and in-vehicle technology to reduce driver distraction. 

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