Comparison of Motor Vehicle Crashes Between Autistic and Non-Autistic Adolescent Drivers

Previous studies have implied that autistic individuals are at higher risk for motor vehicle crashes than non-autistic individuals. However, a recent study led by PISC Senior Scholar Dr. Allison E. Curry, PhD, MPH, suggests otherwise. Curry compared crash rates of autistic and non-autistic adolescents. Data was accessed through electronic health records and statewide driver licensing and crash databases.

Results indicated that autistic drivers had similar or fewer crashes than non-autistic drivers. Specifically, autistic drivers were evaluated to have lower rates of crash involvement, moving violations, and suspensions. Analysis shows driving patterns of autistic drivers to be significantly different than those of non-autistic drivers. These deviations are useful in understanding the weaknesses and strengths of autistic adolescent drivers.

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