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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6(6), 1760-1777; doi:10.3390/ijerph6061760
Article

Hazards Faced by Young Designated Drivers: In-Car Risks of Driving Drunken Passengers

1,*  and 2
1 Centre for Health Promotion Studies and Alberta Centre for Injury Control and Research, School of Public Health, University of Alberta; 4075 RTF, 8308 – 114 Street; Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2E1, Canada 2 Department of Public Health Sciences and Alberta Centre for Injury Control and Research, School of Public Health, University of Alberta; 4075 RTF, 8308 – 114 Street; Edmonton, Alberta, T6G 2E1, Canada
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 May 2009 / Accepted: 5 June 2009 / Published: 8 June 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Alcohol and Public Health)
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Abstract

This qualitative study explored the risk in the practice of young designated drivers transporting drunken peers. Young drivers 18-29 years old in Alberta, Canada participated in 12 focus groups (N = 146). Interviews were semi-structured. A key finding is that when highly intoxicated youth are driven by a designated driver who is a peer, they are likely to behave in ways that are unsafe. Unsafe actions of drunken passengers in the vehicle include physical “rough-housing” with the driver, creating stress for the driver that leads to high risk driving situations and disrupting safe driving through nausea and in-car vomiting.
Keywords: impaired driving; designated driver; traffic safety; injury control impaired driving; designated driver; traffic safety; injury control
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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MDPI and ACS Style

Rothe, P.J.; Carroll, L.J. Hazards Faced by Young Designated Drivers: In-Car Risks of Driving Drunken Passengers. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2009, 6, 1760-1777.

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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health EISSN 1660-4601 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert