Family climate for road safety: A new concept and measure

Orit Taubman-Ben-Ari, Liat Katz-Ben-Ami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


This research adapted the workplace concept of safety climate to the domain of safe driving, defining a new construct of "family climate for road safety". Four studies were conducted in Israel with the aim of developing and validating a multidimensional instrument to assess this construct among young drivers. Study 1 (n = 632) focused on developing the Family Climate for Road Safety Scale (FCRSS), a self-report scale assessing the family climate by means of seven aspects of the parent-child relationship: Modeling, Feedback, Communication, Monitoring, Noncommitment, Messages, and Limits. Significant differences were found between young men and women on all factors. In addition, significant associations were found between the FCRSS factors on the one hand, and the reported frequency of risky driving and personal commitment to safety on the other. Studies 2-4 confirmed the factorial structure of the FCRSS and the reliability of its factors, adding to its criterion and convergent validity. Study 2 (n = 178) yielded significant associations between the scale and young drivers' perception of their parents as involved, encouraging autonomy, and providing warmth; Study 3 (n = 117) revealed significant associations between the scale and youngsters' reported proneness to take risks while driving, as well as significant associations between the factors and various dimensions of family functioning; and Study 4 (n = 156) found associations between the FCRSS factors and both driving styles (risky, angry, anxious, careful) and family cohesion and adaptability. The discussion deals with the validity and utility of the concept of family climate for road safety and its measurement, addressing the practical implications for road safety.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalAccident Analysis and Prevention
StatePublished - May 2013


  • Parents
  • Reckless driving
  • Safety climate
  • Young drivers


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