Are we becoming a nation of road hogs?

New survey suggests we are, as one fifth of motorists confess to running a red light in the last 12 months!
According to a new survey carried out by uSwitch, motorists and cyclists are risking their lives and the safety of other people by ignoring one of the UK’s most important laws of the road – red lights!
The comparison website discovered that one fifth of motorists and over a quarter of cyclists confessed to running a red light in the past year, despite the fact that doing so could mean a fine of up to £1,000 for a driver and £30 for a cyclist.
These findings seem to suggest that regardless of the threat of hefty fines, both drivers and cyclists are still prepared to ignore a red traffic light and this flags a real safety concern.

Are we becoming a nation of road hogs?

One fifth of motorists confess to running a red light in the last 12 months! © Copyright Gary and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

If a motorists fails to stop at a red light they could be issued with a £100 Fixed Penalty Notice and three penalty points, however if the drivers actions are regarded as extremely serious and the case goes to court, the fine could be increased to the maximum £1,000 and six points on their licence.
Whilst it might be easier to track down an offending vehicle, it’s not often the case with cyclists who tend to get away with the crime and avoid being fined.
When the comparison website polled 2,005 people, they also discovered a few more road rules that drivers and cyclists were prepared to break.
Almost two thirds (62%) of motorists admitted to ignoring the speed limit over the past 12 months, whilst nearly one in 10 (9%) confessed to doing so within the last 24 hours!
Despite tougher laws being introduced for drivers caught using their mobile phone behind the wheel, an alarming one in six (29%) admitted to still using their device whilst driving.
As for cyclists, over half owned up to riding on the pavement in the last 12 months despite this being illegal in the UK, whilst nearly half confessed to riding at night with no front and rear lights on their bicycle.
And it seems as though people on foot are prepared to take risks also, as nearly one in five pedestrians owned up to crossing the road without looking both ways.
The most alarming finding to come out of uSwitch’s report, is the fact that many people had no idea if what they’d done wrong over the last 12 months was a breach of the Highway Code rules.
Only 36% said they knew they’d flouted the guidance provided, whilst a disconcerting 28% weren’t sure whether they had or not, showing just how many of us lack a major understanding when it comes to road safety.
“It’s clear there’s a lack of understanding of the Highway Code among drivers, cyclists and pedestrians, and the consequences could be fatal, even before you think about the financial and legal risks,” said Rod Jones, insurance expert at uSwitch.
According to the survey, 77% believe that a better knowledge of the Highway Code might go some way in preventing road accidents – eight out of 10 approved the idea of education in schools.
“Positively, there is a general consensus that more needs to be done in terms of Highway Code education,” added MrJones.
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