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Effectiveness of Child Passenger Safety Information for the Safe Transportation of Children
  • Published Date:
    2016-02-01
  • Language:
    English
Filetype[PDF-8.19 MB]


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Effectiveness of Child Passenger Safety Information for the Safe Transportation of Children
Details:
  • Corporate Creators:
  • Publication/ Report Number:
    DOT HS 812 245
  • Resource Type:
  • Geographical Coverage:
  • Edition:
    Final Report
  • Contracting Officer:
  • Format:
  • Abstract:
    Background: Parents and caregivers struggle to comply with child passenger safety (CPS) recommendations, and frequently make mistakes when choosing and installing restraints. The objective of this project was to develop and test various methods of framing CPS recommendations, and to determine how to best communicate CPS information to parents/caregivers. Method: Two studies were conducted. In Study 1, a 5 (Message Group) X 2 (Time Periods) randomized experiment was conducted in which 300 parent participants viewed one of four flyer versions or a no-education control version. The four flyers all communicated the same CPS recommendations, but employed different emphasis frames: (1) seat types; (2) premature graduation; (3) risk-reduction rationale; or (4) child age. In a fifth no-education (control) condition, participants viewed marketing material. Six informal discussion groups (N = 32) were held as a follow-up task to Study 1 in order to further examine messaging needs and garner feedback. For Study 2, a 4 (Information Group) X 2 (Time Periods) randomized experiment was conducted in which 240 parent participants viewed one of four flyers that communicated CPS recommendations presented either (1) alone, (2) with installation tips, (3) with normative information, or (4) with installation tips and normative information. For both main studies, participants recruited from northeastern and southeastern cities in the United States responded to computerized pre-post surveys that measured CPS knowledge, attitudes, perceptions of efficacy and risk, and behavioral intentions. Results: Study 1 results indicated that CPS recommendations that emphasize the risk-reducing rationale for the recommendations and use action-oriented headers are most effective. Study 2 indicated that parents with higher preexisting CPS awareness and perceptions attend to and benefit more from simplified reminders of recommendations (e.g., information updates), whereas those with lower preexisting CPS awareness and perceptions benefit more broadly from detailed recommendations that include extra information such as installation tips. Conclusions: This research provides insight for increasing caregiver understanding and compliance with CPS information. Recommendations for the field include communicating the rationale behind the information given, using behavior-based directives in headers, avoiding age-based headers, emphasizing back seat positioning, formatting for reduced text, creating novice-user and experienced-user versions of material, combining communications and scientist expertise, and conducting additional research.

    Decina, L. E., Will, K. E., Maple, E. L., Perkins, A. M., Kirley, B., & Mastromatto, T. (2016, February). Effectiveness of child passenger safety information for the safe transportation of children (Report No. DOT HS 812 245). Washington, DC: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

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