According to a recent poll conducted among 1,000 British drivers, more than 70% of those surveyed lack confidence in other drivers. They also concede that the safety of their own driving needs to improve, but on average nevertheless give themselves a very high rating when it comes to safe driving.
The MoneySuperMarket poll revealed that 71% of participants feel that there is a need for other road users to improve – but despite this the vast majority (63%) are not willing to take the Pass Plus training, which has been developed to make British drivers safer behind the wheel.
As a matter of fact, the average British driver gives themselves a rating of eight out of ten in terms of driving ability, despite the fact that well over half of the nation’s drivers (59% to be exact) have been involved in one or more accidents.
And the majority (nearly 55%) of them could not pass the standard driving test the first time they tried.
The poll also revealed that young drivers were widely regarded by Britons as being ‘the least safe’. Close to 44% of respondents think they were the most dangerous group behind the wheel of a car. This, however, is not borne out by statistics. Among the 18-24 year-old age group more than half (52%) have never been involved in a single accident, and 47% passed their driving tests the first time they tried – compared to only 34% in the case of 25-34-year-olds.
Despite this reality, car insurance firms still often regard young, inexperienced drivers as the group posing the highest risk.
According to MoneySuperMarket’s consumer affairs expert, Kevin Pratt, the survey highlighted the sometimes contradictory beliefs held by motorists.
A significant majority think other drivers should improve their level of safety behind the wheel, while motorists typically give themselves a confident 8 out of 10 when asked to score the safety of their own driving”
He added: “That means two drivers could be sitting alongside each other at a set of lights, each thinking themselves a paragon of safe driving while strongly suspecting their neighbour to be an accident waiting to happen.”
He also suggested that inexperienced drivers should turn to the latest technology in an attempt to disprove car insurance firm’s belief that they pose the highest accident risk.
He pointed out that a significantly higher percentage of young drivers in the 18-24-year age group passed their driving test on the first try than individuals who were between 25 and 34 years old, and added that while passing the driving test wasn’t a guarantee of safe driving, it did indicate a level of competence that might just mean all young drivers should not simply be categorised as ‘high-risk’.
Pratt concluded by saying: “Telematics technology, used alongside an increasing number of car insurance policies, gives young drivers an opportunity to demonstrate that they are responsible behind the wheel and deserving of a lower premium than their peers.”
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