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Prevalence and Perception of Depressive Symptomatology Among Spanish Drivers and Its Relation to Driving Safety
International Journal of Psychological and Brain Sciences
Volume 1, Issue 3, December 2016, Pages: 54-61
Received: Oct. 27, 2016; Accepted: Nov. 5, 2016; Published: Dec. 12, 2016
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Francisco Alonso, DATS (Development and Advising in Traffic Safety) Research Group - INTRAS (University Research Institute on Traffic and Road Safety), University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain
Cristina Esteban, DATS (Development and Advising in Traffic Safety) Research Group - INTRAS (University Research Institute on Traffic and Road Safety), University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain
Sergio A. Useche, DATS (Development and Advising in Traffic Safety) Research Group - INTRAS (University Research Institute on Traffic and Road Safety), University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain
Mireia Faus, DATS (Development and Advising in Traffic Safety) Research Group - INTRAS (University Research Institute on Traffic and Road Safety), University of Valencia, Valencia, Spain
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Depression is currently the most frequent mental disorder and one of the main causes of losing years of healthy life. This disorder entails a cognitive and motor deterioration that is seriously detrimental to driving. From the analysis of the interviewed drivers’ attitudes, knowledge and behaviors, the objective of this paper was the following one: detect the impact of depressive symptoms on a driver’s sample and its relationship with several variables related to driving and road safety. A sample of 1.200 Spanish drivers ranging from 18 to 64 years was used, 666 men and 534 women were asked to answer a questionnaire composed by a set of items structured in different sections. The only selection criteria were to be in possession of any type of driving license for vehicles other than motorcycles and drive frequently. 21.9% of the drivers showed signs or symptoms linked with a depressive disorder. There were found significant contingences between the presence of depressive symptoms and a lower risk-taking while driving. It is necessary to propose establishing systems that fulfil two essential requirements: on the one hand, to inform, train and make the drivers aware of detecting and managing the symptoms linked to depression; on the other hand, to detect the drivers that show cognitive and motor deterioration linked to depressive symptoms, and to promote their self-regulation, taking into account the negative implications of driving under depressive symptomatology for performance and road safety in general.
Depression, Drivers, Epidemiology, Public Health, Driving Safety, Road Safety
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Francisco Alonso, Cristina Esteban, Sergio A. Useche, Mireia Faus, Prevalence and Perception of Depressive Symptomatology Among Spanish Drivers and Its Relation to Driving Safety, International Journal of Psychological and Brain Sciences. Vol. 1, No. 3, 2016, pp. 54-61. doi: 10.11648/j.ijpbs.20160103.13
Copyright © 2016 Authors retain the copyright of this article.
This article 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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