The first aim of the present study was to investigate the applicability of the three-factor structure (aggressive violations, ordinary violations, and errors) of the Manchester Driver Behaviour Questionnaire (DBQ) and then to compare these driving behaviours across the six countries (Finland, Great Britain, Greece, Iran, The Netherlands, and Turkey). The third aim of the present study was to evaluate the role of driving styles in the relationship between traffic cultures (countries) and the number of traffic accidents utilizing a mediational framework. The fourth aim of this paper was to investigate the relationship between the three factors of DBQ and the number of traffic accidents in each country. Two hundred and forty-two drivers were chosen from each of the six countries, matched for age and sex. The results of confirmatory factor analyses showed that the fit of the three-factor model of DBQ was partially satisfactory in each country. Exploratory factor analyses together with target (Procrustes) rotation and factorial agreement indexes showed that the "ordinary violations" factor was fully congruent and the "errors" factor was fairly congruent across countries. Reliabilities of the scales were at the same level as in the original British data. ANOVA results revealed differences between drivers from "safe" Western/Northern European and Southern European/Middle Eastern countries on DBQ items and scales. Results demonstrated that driving style mediates the relationship between traffic culture (i.e. country) and the number of accidents. Poisson and negative binomial regression analyses also showed that the importance of driver characteristics and behaviours in predicting the number of traffic accidents varies from country to country. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.