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Traffic Safety Study Reveals Unsafe Driving Habits Differ By Region

By Brandon Smith, IPB News | Published on in Transportation
Lead researcher Dona Sapp says the data can help inform both law enforcement and education. (Indiana University Public Policy Institute)
Lead researcher Dona Sapp says the data can help inform both law enforcement and education. (Indiana University Public Policy Institute)

A statewide traffic safety study reveals differences in unsafe driving habits based on geographic regions of Indiana.

The data comes from the latest update to the Indiana University Public Policy Institute’s yearly look at the state’s traffic safety statistics.

Lead researcher Dona Sapp says she noticed a trend in the study: drivers in southern Indiana are less likely to use a seatbelt – while northern Indiana drivers are more likely to speed. She says the data can help inform both law enforcement and education.

“Do we need to do more public awareness about specific issues in different regions of the state?” Sapp says.

This year’s data also shows young, male drivers are the most reckless. Sapp says that’s frustrating because it hasn’t changed from years past.

“Why is that the case?” Sapp says. “And how can we really target those individuals to convince them to be more aware of, I guess, the consequences of dangerous behaviors and being more alert when they’re driving?”

The study also shows serious accidents peak overnight and both leading into and coming out of the weekend.