An evaluation of the impact of 'Lifeskills' training on road safety, substance use and hospital attendance in adolescence

Alison Teyhan, Rosie P Cornish, Andrew W Boyd, John A A Macleod, Rita Doerner, Mary Sissons Joshi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)

4 Citations (Scopus)
277 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Purpose

To evaluate if attendance at Lifeskills, a safety education centre for children in Year 6 (10–11 years), is associated with engagement in safer behaviours, and with fewer accidents and injuries, in adolescence.

Methods

The sample are participants in the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children who attended school in the Lifeskills catchment area in Year 6; 60% attended Lifeskills. At 14–15 years, participants (n approximately 3000, varies by outcome) self-reported road safety behaviours and accidents, and perceived health effects and use of alcohol, cannabis, and tobacco. Additional outcomes from linkage to Hospital Episodes Statistics were available for a sub-sample (n = 1768): hospital admittance (for accident-related reason, from 11–16 years) and A&E attendance (for any reason, from approximately 14–16 years).

Results

Children who attended Lifeskills were more likely to report using pedestrian crossings on their way to school than children who did not attend (59% versus 52%). Lifeskills attendance was unrelated to the ownership of cycle helmets, or the use of cycle helmets, seat belts, or reflective/fluorescent clothing, or to A&E attendance. Use of cycle helmets (37%) and reflective/fluorescent clothing (<4%) on last cycle was low irrespective of Lifeskills attendance. Lifeskills attendance was associated with less reported smoking and cannabis use, but was generally unrelated to perceptions of the health impact of substance use.

Conclusions

Lifeskills attendance was associated with some safer behaviours in adolescence. The overall low use of cycle helmets and reflective/fluorescent clothing evidences the need for powerful promotion of some safer behaviours at Lifeskills and at follow-up in schools.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-113
Number of pages6
JournalAccident Analysis and Prevention
Volume86
Early online date10 Nov 2015
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2016

Keywords

  • Accident prevention
  • Safety training
  • Pedestrian Skills
  • Cycle Safety
  • Adolescence
  • ALSPAC

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