The young and the reckless: Social and physical warning messages reduce dangerous driving behavior in a simulator

Daniel Robert Chebat, Linda Lemarié, Batya Rotnemer, Tzviel Talbi, Michael Wagner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Road accidents are mostly avoidable and young males seem to be the group most prone to adopt dangerous driving behavior. Many efforts have been made to specifically target this group using two different kinds of warning messages: social and physical warnings. The relative effectiveness of these warning messages has never been compared directly, and their direct effectiveness has never been assessed in a realistic driving simulator to observe possible immediate changes in behavior while driving. Fifty young Israeli drivers (27 women) performed a driving task in a life-size driving simulator before and after watching either a physical or a social warning message. We compared the subject's driving behavior in terms of collisions, speed excesses, and non-compliance with traffic lights before and after watching the warning videos. We show that physical and social warning messages both had an immediate positive influence on reckless driving behavior in a realistic driving scenario, and that viewing the social video had a greater impact on men than on women. Our results indicate that both kinds of warning messages are effective in immediately reducing reckless driving behavior, but that publicity campaigns targeting specifically young males would benefit from developing social warning messages.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102701
JournalJournal of Retailing and Consumer Services
StatePublished - Nov 2021


  • Driving simulator
  • Physical warning messages
  • Reckless driving
  • Social warning messages


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