Should we be talking about addiction when it comes to young drivers and smartphones?
Keywords: Road User Behaviour and Human Factors
Submission Date: 2019
A qualitative investigation involving 30 young drivers was undertaken to explore how they perceive their own and their peers’ smartphone use, both in general and while driving. A particular aim of the study was to explore whether young people considered it appropriate to describe problematic smartphone use as an ’addiction’. The findings suggest that that illegal smartphone use while driving is perceived to be very widespread. However, while the participants acknowledge that the behavior is highly habitual, they don’t tend to see it as ’addictive’ in nature. The findings have important implications for the design of education messages and programs.