Driver aggression
Aggressive gestures - a sign of anger
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Driver aggression: the statistics

  • 70% of drivers have been tailgated, yet a quarter admit to doing it themselves
  • 70% of motorists have been cut off by another driver
  • Over half (56%) have been faced with aggressive gestures from another motorist
  • Over a third (34%) have been a victim of verbal aggression

DRIVER aggression can be a killer and blocking the road (42%), verbal aggression (34%) and aggressive gestures (56%) are among the top threatening behaviours motorists around the world experience.

These results in the 2016’s MobilityMonitor Survey from LeasePlan come at the start of Brake’s Road Safety Week – 21-27 November – which this year asks people to do everything they can to protect themselves and the people around them.

Brake’s pledge asks everyone to be slow, sober, secure, silent, sharp and sustainable.

Unsurprisingly, the two most aggressive behaviours that the 4,869 drivers surveyed claim to have experienced are being cut off and tailgating (both 70%). Strikingly, a quarter (25%) of motorists also admit to committing the latter themselves.

For business users in signwritten vehicles, any aggressive behaviour is going to be bad for the company image as well as carrying very heavy penalties if aggression results in a collision regardless of whether the vehicles are liveried.

With specific reference to British drivers, LeasePlan’s MobilityMonitor Survey reveals over three-quarters (77%) claim they have experienced other motorists driving dangerously quickly, yet ironically, nearly half (45%) do it themselves, with Gen Y drivers being the biggest culprits of driving too fast (61%).

UK motorists do however appear to be some of the least aggressive drivers in the world. Although almost one-in-ten (9%) admit to tailgating, this compares to nearly one-fifth (18%) of Americans and 14% of Asians who admit to doing the same. And, compared to Australia (17%) and Asia (15%), British drivers are least likely to give other drivers aggressive gestures (12%).

According to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA), careless or aggressive driving is the fourth biggest cause of fatal road crashes in the UK.

Drivers not indicating (15%) and other motorists driving really slowly (11%) are also among the biggest annoyances of drivers around the world.

Mobile phone use behind the wheel also fell under the top annoyances of drivers globally, with LeasePlan’s MobilityMonitor Survey revealing that the UK (17%), USA (22%) and Italy (17%) are most frustrated by this.

Recently the Department for Transport outlined tougher six-point and £200 penalties for drivers caught using their mobile phone behind the wheel that can result in disqualification.

Talking about motorists experiencing aggression on the roads, Lesley Slater, LeasePlan UK’s operations and business development director, comments: “Aggressive behaviour on the road, such as tailgating, rude gestures or being cut up, can impact concentration levels and increase the risk of a collision.

“To keep all road users safe, it’s important that drivers don’t react to everything perceived as an injustice on the road. Every one of us is trying to get from A to B as quickly, safely and efficiently as possible and it’s more important than ever to be more tolerant and show consideration for other users on our congested roads.”

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