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Should we stop trying to make the driver feel invincible?
The theory of risk homeostasis states that an individual has an inbuilt target level of acceptable risk which does not change. This level varies between individuals. When the level of acceptable risk in one part of the individual's life changes; there will be a corresponding rise/drop in acceptable risk elsewhere. The same, argues Wilde, is true of larger human systems (e.g. a population of drivers).For example, in the famous Munich taxicab study, half of a fleet of cabs were equipped with antilock braking system (ABS) brakes, while the other half had older brake systems. The accident rate for both types of car (ABS and non-ABS) remained the same, because ABS-car drivers took more risks, assuming that ABS would take care of them. They raised their risk taking, assuming the ABS would then lower the real risks, leaving their "target level" of risk unchanged. The non-ABS drivers drove the same way, thinking that they had to be more careful, since ABS would not be there to help in case of a dangerous situation.
I am rather glad that my daughter was driving a car which crumpled up at the front end when a silly woman pulled out from her drive without looking. It was amazing. The front end was a complete wreck but from the font door pillar back it was as good as new.