Over the limit: Half of UK drivers say it’s acceptable to drive too fast

Half of UK drivers think it’s acceptable to break the speed limit, according to survey of 2,000 people carried out by the insurance company Direct Line.

Those who admitted to driving too quickly thought that, on average, it would be okay to travel at 25mph in a 20mph zone; 35mph in a 30mph zone and 46mph in a 40mph zone.

Speeders would be prepared to travel at 79mph on UK motorways, even though the limit is 70mph ¬– and frequently lower at times of congestion.

Seventy-eight per cent of motorists who took part in the survey admitted to speeding, with 12 per cent breaking the limit on most journeys and five per cent doing so on every trip they undertake.

In the south-west, 84 per cent of drivers admitted speeding, making it the worst region for the offence. Yorkshire recorded the lowest proportion of speeders at 71 per cent.

As for reasons for going too fast, 51 per cent of speeders say they did so unintentionally, 34 per cent do it deliberately if the road they are using is free of traffic, and 19 per cent are guilty of it when they are running late.

A reckless five per cent say they speed purely because they enjoy the thrill of fast driving.

Rob Miles, director of car insurance at Direct Line, said: “Speeding is one of the biggest causes of accidents and casualties on UK roads.

“The research suggests that it is often not deliberate, as drivers may be unaware that they are creeping above the limit.

“However, speed limits are set for a reason, and 20mph and 30mph zones are often around schools, hospitals and other highly pedestrianised zones, where going over the limit could prove fatal in the event of an accident.”

Tristan Shale-Hester


April 20, 2018

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