The Correlation Between Education, Engineering, Enforcement, and Self-Reported Seat Belt Use in Tennessee: Incorporating Heterogeneity and Time of Day Effects
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour. 2019, 66 379-392. 10.1016/j.trf.2019.09.003
Time of day and heterogeneity are two common factors that received less attention in self-reported studies concerning seat belt use. Although nighttime seat belt use rate is relatively lower than daytime, previous studies have often not separated the analysis of seat belt use between daytime and nighttime. To incorporate heterogeneity in our analysis, we used random parameters and geographically weighted regression models to explore the factors influencing seat belt use. This study consists of a self-reported seat belt use survey conducted in a sample of 814 respondents aged 18–50 years in six counties (50 zip codes area) in East Tennessee. Comparison of the models indicated that the geographically weighted regression models outperformed other models. Considering the non-stationary test, we learned that the local coefficients displayed relatively constant variation across space in the study area, which indicates behaviors, at least across a large metropolitan area, does not vary spatially. For the random parameter models, age and income had random parameter effects. Perception of receiving a ticket for not wearing a seat belt, uncomfortable seat belt design, driving for a short distance, and driving exposure also had significant negative associations with self-reported seat belt use in both models. Moreover, exposure to educational programs had a significant correlation with seat belt use only in nighttime, whereas this correlation was insignificant for daytime. Findings provide new insight for design and convoy new messages to promote seat belt use by targeting factors predicting seat belt use. Results are discussed in line with road safety analysis.