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Drivers in France still drive dangerously – but a bit better

Drivers on French roads continue to behave dangerously but there is some improvement, a survey from Vinci Autoroutes Foundation published today shows.

1 July 2020

More than nine out of ten drivers (91%) admit to exceeding the speed limits compared to 92% in 2019, 72% say they do not respect safety distances (this was 76% last year), 57% forget to use their indicator lights when overtaking or changing direction compared to 61% last year and 27% send text messages while driving compared to 28% last year.

Almost three quarters of drivers polled (74%) say they take their eyes off the road for at least two seconds.

Twenty per cent of drivers also have a negative view of their own driving behaviour and 89% qualify the attitude of others negatively (irresponsible, dangerous, aggressive, etc).

The survey also shows that two dangerous issues are on the rise: forgetting to wear a seatbelt which affects 10% of drivers compared to 8% last year and driving on the emergency lane of a motorway which concerns 4% of people against 3% last year.

General delegate of the Vinci Autoroutes Foundation, Bernadette Moreau said: “There are still a very significant number of actions that are really dangerous. Although drivers may be more lucid about their own driving, they tend to judge that they drive well, and to be more severe with others.”

The survey also shows that residents in Ile-de-France use their horn more (67%) and tend to insult other drivers more often (81%).

In general 56% drivers on French roads beep their horns – 3% less than last year. 18% tend to overtake from the right on the motorway against 22% last year, most commonly in Brittany (39%).

This survey was carried out on a sample of 2,400 people aged 16 and over, and does not include drivers in Corsica.  

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