Unfortunately accidents on the road can still be quite common. We conducted a study to find out what and who causes the most accidents on our roads today. When an accident is not your fault it can be particularly daunting to know what to do next, so we also created this guide on what to do after a car accident that wasn’t your fault.
According to the ONS, there were 174,510 road accident casualties of all severities in the year ending September 2017. Such high casualty rates are clearly cause for concern.
So what’s driving the number of casualties? Finder UK commissioned a study of 2,000 British adults in February 2018 to find out just how bad our dangerous driving habits really are.
Our study found three-quarters of respondents (75.55%) say they have driven in the past year. Out of these drivers, nearly half (47.78%) do things while driving that distract from the wheel – that’s an estimated 15 million dangerous drivers.
Overall men were found to be slightly more dangerous behind the wheel than women, with 47% of drivers admitting to behaviours that reduce focus while driving, compared to 44% of women.
Millennials were the most dangerous drivers overall, outranking their elders in every category. Most significantly, millennials were nearly twice as likely to drive after having a drink, with 7.4% of millennials drink driving compared to just 4.17% of Gen X and 4.04% of baby boomer drivers.
What’s the most common dangerous driving behaviour?
Speeding was the most common behaviour, where 29.91% admitted to speeding while driving, followed by driving while fatigued and talking on the phone. Out of the drivers from our study, the following were the most common dangerous driving behaviours.
Who are the guilty culprits?
Let’s break down the data
Of those who drive, women are more likely to text while driving, with 7.72% of women texting compared to only 5.82% of men. Similar disparities exist when comparing habits of people who speak on the phone, with 13.28% of women chatting on the phone while driving, compared to only 11.77% of men.
When it comes to speed, men are more likely to hit the pedal – with 32.47% of men speeding in the last year compared to only 27.24% of women.
Men are also more likely to risk the roads after a few pints at the pub, with 5.82% of men driving after having a drink or taking medication, this is compared to just 3.93% of women.
While men are more likely to drive after a night on the cans, women are more likely to drive while their concentration is waning – with 20.33% of women driving while fatigued compared to just 15.78% of men.
Similarly, women are more than twice as likely to groom themselves while driving, such as applying makeup, cleaning their teeth, or even fixing their nails, with 6.1% of women participating in the behaviour compared to just 2.98% of men.
When comparing generational differences in driving habits, millennials come out as the most dangerous of all.
Most confronting, millennial drivers are more than four times as likely to text while driving than Gen X and baby boomer drivers combined, with 16.99% of millennial drivers texting while driving, compared to a combined figure of 3.49% for Gen X and baby boomer drivers who text while they drive.Similarly, more millennial drivers talk on the phone while driving, with 21.64% of millennial drivers engaging in this behaviour, compared to only 14.04% of Gen X drivers and 5.82% of baby boomers.
Millennials continue to lead the pack in their dangerous driving habits, as they are more than twice as likely to groom themselves while driving at 10.96% of millennial drivers, compared to just 3.42% of Gen X and 1.62% of Baby boomers.
While all generations were found to speed at alarming rates – all three generations were guilty of speeding at a rate above 28% – millennials were again found to be the worst culprits. The study discovered that 33.97% of millennial drivers speed while driving, upwards of 5 percentage points more than Gen X and Baby boomer with comparable rates of 28.84% and 28.43% respectively.
Millennials are also more likely to drive after drinking at a rate almost double that of Gen X and Baby boomers, with 7.4% of millennials drink driving compared to just 4.17% of Gen X and 4.04% of baby boomer drivers.
Rounding out the list of dangerous millennial driving habits, a staggering 26.03% of millennials have driven while fatigued, more than double the rate of baby boomers at just 11.79%.
We’re not surprised to learn casualties on British roads last year were edging to 200,000. While car insurance won’t prevent an accident, it could prove helpful if you find yourself in an accident. Whether it’s a minor collision or a total write-off, it’s important to feel secure in your insurance coverage before you hit the roads.
No matter how you drive, it’s worth comparing car insurance policies and perks to find the best coverage for your specific needs. After all, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
This data comes from a survey of 2,000 UK adults, commissioned by finder.com/uk and carried out by onepoll during February 2018.
For all media enquiries, please contact
Matt Mckenna UK Communications Manager M: +44 747 921 7816 T: +44 20 8191 8806
Esther Wolffowitz is a publisher at finder.com. She is a specialist in insurance and wants to help UK consumers make better decisions. Esther holds an MSc in Media and Communication Governance from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). In her spare time, she enjoys discovering new restaurants and food markets in London.
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