Some of these on our list of top 10 worst driving habits should come as no surprise to anybody driving on todays roads. It is quite common that soon after taking one of the most nerve-wracking tests a person can take, the dreaded driving test, many of us pick up some of the worst driving habits. Some of the instructions taught to us go out the window because we do not have anyone by our side keeping us in check. Have you been the one guilty of any of these?
Below are our Top 10 Worst Driving Habits that annoy you the most:
1. Driving Distracted
This is at the top of your list for most infuriating driving habit. It is estimated that 22% of crashes could be caused, at least in part, by drivers being distracted at the wheel. Drivers who are doing something else as well as driving, such as eating or drinking are two to three times more likely to crash. Other studies found that if this is talking on a mobile or texting, the risk of an accident increases even further. The distractions mentioned here include eating, drinking, applying make-up, texting, making phone calls, styling hair and even changing clothing!
2. Road Rage and Aggressive Driving
Road rage must be not only one of the worst driving habits, but also one of the most dangerous. Nowadays everybody seems to be in a hurry and it shows when we drive. It has been found that the average speed at morning rush hour is now slower than a WWII tank! Is it any wonder that we dread rush-hour?
The peak time for drivers to get angry is 5.45pm, with Friday evenings and Monday morning commuting being the worst. It has also been established that men lose their temper behind the wheel more easily than women.
Tailgating is a bad habit that can easily lead to road rage or an accident. A tailgater is one that drives closer than 1 second behind the vehicle in front of them, when actually you should leave at least a 2 second gap (remember: Only a fool breaks the 2 second rule!).
79% have said that people driving too closely behind them annoyed them more than any other bad driving habit. With 40% of motorway drivers tailgating, is it any wonder that we see red when we are tailgated?
4. Failing to Indicate
We have all been held up at a roundabout or junction for what seems like an eternity attempting to use our psychic powers to work out which direction the car in front is going to go. A large majority of people who mentioned this irritating habit particularly included failure to indicate at a roundabout. To help anyone who is unsure of when to indicate, this helpful image from the Highways Code shows how to use a roundabout correctly.
Did you know that speeding on rural roads can put you at 4 times the risk of a fatal accident? Or even that it ranks second of the most common worst driving habits of learner drivers who are taught by their parents? Today the pace of life is much faster than it used to be, and that includes simply driving from A to B. It can easily happen when you are driving along that you glance down at your speedometer only to find it has crept over the limit. Its important to be aware of your speed, not just for your own safety but that of other people around you.
6. Poor Parking
It happens all the time…you drive into a car park and have to park all the way down the other end because some kind-hearted person has decided to take up all of their parking space and half of the one you want to park in. Being able to park efficiently is part of the driving test, so why cant people do it considerately? Social media platforms, such as Facebook, have numerous pages that are dedicated to individuals who park badly in local areas so be aware, bad parkers cant hide for long!
7. Hogging the Middle Lane
Were you aware that middle lane hogging is now classed as a driving offence as it holds up the traffic and can cause tailbacks? You could get a £100 fine and points on your licence. Lane-hogging wastes a third of motorway capacity which in turn helps to create traffic congestion and leads to dangerous undertaking.
The UK Highway Code states that drivers should “always drive in the left-hand lane when the road ahead is clear. If you are overtaking a number of slower-moving vehicles, you should return to the left-hand lane as soon as you are safely past.” Its not complicated. Drive in the left-hand lane, move out to overtake, move back to the left-hand lane. Simple.
8. Pushing In
One of the most complained about habits on the road is those drivers who think they have the right to push into traffic and make everyone else brake for them. This is mainly seen in such situations as junctions, exits and motorway lane changing. Many drivers are courteous and respectful of each other but there are those few who need a lesson in manners. Obviously this also comes with the huge risk of having an accident at the roadside, resulting in more confrontation and the need for your vehicle to be recovered by a breakdown recovery company.
9. Last-Minute Lane Changing
This is very closely linked to “Pushing in”. For those who unknowingly are about to miss their turn off, and make a last-minute adjustment, this is forgivable (albeit dangerous at times). For those people who change lane to shave a few minutes off their journey, they show a lack of respect to everyone on the road. Not forgetting how dangerous it is for cyclists due to the lack of concentration they have on the road when pulling out across traffic; the chances of seeing a cyclist coming are limited.
10.Traffic Light Jumping
Finally, jumping the lights is also connected with “Road rage and aggressive driving” above. We will start with the obvious; this is illegal. The maximum penalty for running a red light is (i) a £1,000 fine, (ii) three penalty points and (iii) disqualification. No matter how late or frustrating the delay, traffic lights are there for a reason… safety. Jumping the lights causes needless accidents. This law is also the case for cyclists, they are not legally allowed to go through a red light either.