Steering Clear of Driving After Drinking: a Tailored e-Health Intervention for Reducing Repeat Offending and Modifying Alcohol Use in a High-Risk Cohort

Int J Behav Med. 2017 Oct;24(5):694-702. doi: 10.1007/s12529-017-9664-1.


Purpose: Digital interventions to reduce risk behaviours are emerging as effective public health measures; however, few have been applied to drink driving and associated alcohol use based on a harm reduction perspective. This paper reports on the design, development, and pilot of a novel intervention which aims to reduce repeat offending by first-time convicted drink driving offenders. It explores whether an online program is acceptable and user friendly and contains useful and relevant content, with a sample of first-time drink driving offenders recruited at the time of conviction.

Method: Building upon existing research into interventions to reduce drink driving recidivism and problem alcohol use, a tailored program was designed to provide content specifically concerned with drink driving and with an additional component related to alcohol use. Following stakeholder and internal review, the 'Steering Clear First Offender Drink Driving Program' was subsequently piloted with 15 first-time drink driving offenders. Evaluative data was analysed both quantitatively and qualitatively.

Results: The pilot results indicate that the participants found the program to be user friendly, as demonstrated by high scores in relation to navigation, online delivery, engagement, avatar usage and straightforwardness. They reported that they found the content to be useful and relevant and that the key learning area was in relation to the consequences of drink driving.

Conclusion: Online interventions for reducing risky behaviour such as drink driving may be useful and cost effective from a public health perspective. Potentially, they can directly address risky behaviours associated with alcohol use in high-risk cohorts that may not ordinarily receive intervention.

Keywords: Alcohol; Drink driving; Health risk behaviour; Online intervention; Steering clear first offender drink driving program; Treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcohol Drinking / epidemiology*
  • Automobile Driving*
  • Criminals / psychology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Pilot Projects
  • Recidivism
  • Risk-Taking
  • Telemedicine / methods*