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Dangerous driving habits, tiredness, summer heat or just plain complacence?

Various studies this week have shown the extent to which drivers regularly push their luck at the wheel and it can only be a recipe for disaster.

We’ve all been there. We’ve occasionally let complacence, tiredness, or the behaviour of other drivers get the better of us, but learnt from it. Now, according to a survey by Sainsbury’s Car Insurance, an alarming 64 per cent of motorists have admitted to driving in a dangerous manner in the last month, which doesn’t bode well for the rest of the time!
What’s more, apparently a lot of it has been attributed to summer heat.  Can it really be that we Brits are never happy with driving conditions, whatever the weather? If it’s not potholes, snow and ice in the winter, it’s sweltering temperatures in the summer…

Last month saw a two per cent increase in road rage to six per cent, compared to the same month last year.  Meanwhile those wearing flip-flops or nothing at all on their feet while driving rose from 14 per cent to 18 per cent.

Other offences included eating or drinking behind the wheel, driving while tired, and prosecutable offences such as speeding or driving while using a hand-held mobile.

Sainsbury’s Car Insurance Manager Ben Tyte said: “People can become very complacent behind the wheel, especially if they drive regularly. Often confident drivers can step over the line and drive in a manner that can endanger themselves and other road users.”

Meanwhile, a study by road safety charity Brake has revealed a shocking 74 per cent of motorists admitting to driving while tired, equating to millions potentially putting their lives and the lives of others, at risk.

Are we regular, old-hat drivers so arrogant about our abilities that we think we can literally drive with our eyes closed, and blame the weather and the behaviour of others for our reckless antics before we blame ourselves?

There’s a few lessons to be learned here, and the sooner the better.

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