Transportation & Vehicle Safety Policy

Document Type

Technical Report

Publication Date



Objective, detailed and accurate information regarding the prevalence of factors with the potential to contribute to crashes is vital. In-vehicle event recorders (IVERs) have become a widely accepted means of gathering crash data both in research and real-world applications. This study examines naturalistic data from crashes that involved teenage drivers aged 16-19 with the use of a Lytx’s DriveCam system. A total of 1,691 moderate-to-severe crashes met the inclusion criteria were analyzed for the current study. Video from the 6 seconds preceding each crash were coded for analysis. The video data were coded with the goal of identifying the factors present prior to crashes – in particular the prevalence of potentially distracting driver behaviors and drowsiness. The study addressed the following research questions:

  1. What were the roadway and environmental conditions at the time of the crash?
  2. What were the critical events and potential contributing factors leading up to the crash and did these differ by crash type?
  3. What driver behaviors were present in the vehicle prior to the crash and did these differ by crash type?
  4. How did driver reaction times and eyes-off-road time differ relative to certain driver behaviors and crash types?
  5. Could drowsy driving be detected using this type of crash data?

Understanding the prevalence of potential contributing causes of crashes provides a significant societal benefit and advances the field of traffic safety. More specifically, information regarding what is happening inside the vehicle during the seconds before a crash can suggest countermeasures such as education, training, or advanced safety technologies that might best mitigate certain types of crashes.


teen driving, naturalistic driving studies, event-triggered video recorder (ETVR), driver distraction

Total Pages

69 pages, 12 figures, 18 tables, 2 appendices

Granting or Sponsoring Agency

AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety


Sponsored by AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety.

Includes bibliographical references.


Copyright © 2015 the authors