Program

Jun 30, 2010

OVERVIEW

The Checkpoints
Program is a year-long education-based graduated teen driving intervention. The
program’s goal is to increase parental restrictions on high-risk driving
behaviors among youth just learning how to drive. Over the course of a year,
families are mailed a series of informational materials, including a video,
newsletters, and a driving agreement. An experimental evaluation found that at
the time of youth licensure, there were positive impacts on the four
youth-report and parent-report outcomes: youth-passenger limits, high-speed road
limits, weekday driving restrictions, and weekend driving restrictions. At the
one-year assessment, there were impacts on youth-report and parent-report
high-speed road limits and weekend driving restrictions. There were no impacts
on the youth-report and parent-report youth-passenger limits and weekday driving
restrictions at the one-year follow-up.

DESCRIPTION
OF PROGRAM

Target
population:
16-year-old youth seeking a learner’s permit.

The Checkpoints
Program is a year-long education-based intervention, targeting parents and youth
who are applying for a learner’s permit. The program’s goal is to increase
parental restrictions on high-risk driving behaviors among youth just learning
how to drive. Over the course of a year, families are mailed a series of
informational materials, including a video, newsletters, and a driving
agreement. These materials are mailed to families to coincide with the youth’s
driving stage of development. For example, families receive the video shortly
after they are recruited into the study; eight newsletters are mailed to
families while youth have their learners’ permit, and 10 additional newsletters
are mailed up to six months after youth obtain their driver’s license.
Informational materials are intended to convey the risks of youth driving,
expectations of parental restrictions on youth driving, and the benefits of
adopting the Checkpoints Parent-Teen Driving Agreement. The Checkpoints
Parent-Teen Driving Agreement is intended to support parents in limiting
high-risk driving conditions such as youth nighttime driving and youth driving
with multiple teenage passengers. The driving agreement also helps parents
develop clear driving rules, including identifying consequences of violating
rules and identifying successes when abiding by the rules.

EVALUATION(S)
OF PROGRAM

Simons-Morton
BG, Hartos JL, Leaf WA, Preusser DF. (2005) Persistence of Effects of the
Checkpoints Program on Parental Restrictions of Teen Driving Privileges. American Journal of Public Health, 95(3): 447-452.

Evaluated
population:
A total of 420 parent-youth pairs participated in the study.
Among the parent participants, 61% were mothers, 83% were white, 67% were
between 40-49 years of age, 75% had some post-high school education, 80% were
married, and 61% had annual household incomes of greater than $50,000. Among
youth participants, 53% were male, and 86% went on to obtain their driver’s
license within 12 months of eligibility.

Approach:
Families were approached for participation at one of eight Department of Motor
Vehicle agencies throughout the state of Connecticut. After completing a
pre-license baseline telephone interview, parent-youth pairs were then randomly
slotted to either the intervention group (n=210) or the control group (n=210).
Additional assessments were conducted, also through telephone interviews, at the
time the youth acquired a license, as well as three, six, and 12 months after
licensure. Families in the control group were mailed informational materials
such as the importance of using seat belts.

Outcomes
assessed at these study periods mainly centered on imposed driving limits:
number of other teenage passengers allowed in the car, high-speed road limits,
and weekday and weekend night driving restrictions.

Results:
At the time of youth licensure, there were impacts on the four youth-report and
parent-report outcomes: youth-passenger limits, high-speed road limits, weekday
driving restrictions, and weekend driving restrictions. All youth-report and
parent-report impacts were sustained at the three-month follow-up period. At the
six-month follow-up period, impacts remained for high-speed road limits and
weekend driving restrictions, but there was no impact on weekday driving
restrictions (parents were assessed only on high-speed road limits at the
six-month assessment). At the one-year assessment, there were impacts on
youth-report and parent-report high-speed road limits and weekend driving
restrictions. However, there were no impacts on the youth-report and
parent-report youth-passenger limits and weekday driving restrictions.

SOURCES FOR
MORE INFORMATION

For a copy of
the Checkpoints Parent-Teen Driving Agreement, please visit:

http://www.mccpta.com/safety_dir/Driving_agreement_2_RGB.pdf

References:

Simons-Morton
BG, Hartos JL, Leaf WA. (2002). Promoting Parental Management of Teen Driving.
Injury Prevention, 8(Suppl II):ii24-ii31.

Simons-Morton
BG, Hartos JL, Leaf WA, Preusser DF. (2005) Persistence of Effects of the
Checkpoints Program on Parental Restrictions of Teen Driving Privileges. American Journal of Public Health, 95(3): 447-452.

KEYWORDS:
Adolescents (12-17), Youth (16+), High School, Home-based, Parent/Family
Component, Other Safety

Program information last updated 6/30/10