Attitudinal and motivational aspects of aberrant driving in a West African country

Type Journal Article - Tidsskrift for Norsk Psykologforening
Title Attitudinal and motivational aspects of aberrant driving in a West African country
Volume 50
Publication (Day/Month/Year) 2013
Page numbers 451-461
Road traffic crashes are reaching pandemic proportions in Ghana. Drivers of commercially operated passenger-carrying minibuses contribute significantly to road crashes. This study investigated the individual and situational determinants of aberrant driving among this population group in the Manya Krobo District of eastern Ghana. Thirteen drivers took part in face-to-face interviews and focus group discussions regarding their traffic risk perception, attitudes, behaviour, and motivations for risk-taking. Three key informants also provided information on traffic behaviour in the area. Qualitative content analysis was used to analyse the data. Participants described drivers’ poor working conditions, bad road and vehicle conditions, poor road signage and signalisation as significant contributors to aberrant driving in the District. Inadequate driver training, irregularities in licensing drivers, and fatalistic beliefs were also considered key determinants of dangerous driving. Our findings suggest that road traffic crashes in Ghana result from the interaction of systems. They highlight the need to pay greater attention to the activities of commercial drivers and vehicle owners in suburban Ghana. We submit that effective countermeasures would require community psychology approaches to build relationships between individuals and local community organisations in order to influence local government policy and to effect lasting traffic behaviour changes.

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