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The costs of avoiding accidents: Selective compliance and the ‘Peltzman effect’ in Italy

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  • Benedettini, Simona
  • Nicita, Antonio
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    Abstract

    We empirically investigate the deterrent and offsetting effects of the introduction of a point-record driving license (PDRL) in Italy. We find that the PDRL resulted in a sharp reduction of seat belt offenses, and in a noticeable decrease of road accidents. However, the reduction in occupant fatalities and injuries was associated with an increase in non-occupant ones, suggesting a remarkable “Peltzman effect”. We then discuss whether a given enforcement design, by inducing drivers to make the best use of safety resources already available to them, may generate more external costs than would otherwise occur.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal International Review of Law and Economics.

    Volume (Year): 32 (2012)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 256-270

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:irlaec:v:32:y:2012:i:2:p:256-270

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    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/irle

    Related research

    Keywords: Offsetting behavior; Point-record driving license; Seat belts; Traffic law enforcement; Traffic fatalities;

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    Cited by:
    1. José I. Castillo-Manzano & Mercedes Castro-Nuño & Xavier Fageda, 2014. "“Are traffic violators criminals? Searching for answers in experiences of European countries”," IREA Working Papers 201415, University of Barcelona, Research Institute of Applied Economics, revised May 2014.

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