Britain’s motorists habitually speed and a third struggle to understand the meaning of basic road signs, according to new research by car insurance provider More Th>n.
In a survey of 2,000 drivers, the company found that 34 per cent of drivers were clueless as to what the national speed limit sign signified, and one in seven mistook a ‘slippery road’ sign to mean ‘paint on the road’.
Aside from this shocking lack of rudimentary knowledge, the research also highlighted our obsession with driving above the speed limit.
A fifth of all drivers surveyed were found to have received penalty points for speeding offences in the past 10 years, with around 13 per cent of those reaching nine points or more.
"There’s a worrying number of drivers for whom speeding is an acceptable everyday behaviour."
Furthermore, a staggering 1,340,680 drivers either received penalty points or were banned from driving altogether in the past year, of which 818,768 were found to be speeding – an average of 2,243 every day.
Motorways were areas in which most drivers would regularly admit to speeding, with 43 per cent of respondents – representative of an estimated 15.6million drivers – stating that they regularly drive above 80mph. This is compared to 36 per cent of drivers who admitted to regularly exceeding the 30mph limit in built-up areas.
The results of this behaviour are clear. Just under a quarter of drivers questioned have either crashed their car or had a near-miss as a result of driving too fast, and Government figures show that there are an average of 13 speed-related collisions on Britain’s roads each day.
Janet Connor, of More Th>n car insurance, commented: “This research shows that there’s a worrying number of drivers for whom speeding is an acceptable everyday behaviour. Couple this with shocking ignorance when it comes to the most common road signs, which are designed to help ensure safe and responsible driving, and you’ve got a recipe for road disaster as well as an increase in the cost of car insurance.”