What does the driving and riding avoidance scale (DRAS) measure?
Driving anxiety can have a significant impact on everyday functioning and usually results in some kind of avoidance behaviour. The Driving and Riding Avoidance Scale (DRAS; Stewart, A. E., & St. Peter, C. C. (2004). Driving and riding avoidance following motor vehicle crashes in a non-clinical sample: psychometric properties of a new measure. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 42, 859–879) shows promise in the self-report assessment of the degree of such avoidance. The present study investigated the psychometric properties of the DRAS in a sample of 301 university students. Internal consistency for the DRAS was 0.89 and temporal stability over two months was 0.71. The factor structure of the DRAS supported the use of the general and traffic avoidance subscales but not the weather and riding avoidance subscales in the present non-clinical sample. However, a significant limitation of the DRAS is that it does not assess the reasons for driving avoidance, and is therefore not a measure of avoidance that is due to driving anxiety. Some items may be rated highly for practical reasons, such as avoidance because of increasing fuel and other costs associated with driving. Modified instructions for the DRAS should ensure that it measures anxiety-related avoidance behaviour.