As we approach the Memorial Day mayhem and carnage on U.S roads, a recent survey from Envista Forensics (1) concludes that so-called Millennials* lead the Dangerous Driving race. (See U.S. Memorial Day Travel Primed to be a Near Record)
“By far, millennials are the greatest menaces to mobile society: 1 in 4 millennials have tried and failed to change their dangerous driving behavior,” said Envista after querying 2000 drivers who admitted that they are part of the dangerous driving problem comprised of rushed, distracted, aggressive, intoxicated. There is also a double standard in play: Drunk driving is illegal, but distracted driving – largely from ubiquitous cellphone, connected-car web use and eating while driving, is tacitly condoned.
A Peaceful Solution?
Only through conscious change can behavior improve. That’s Envista’s theory. Both “rushed and aggressive drivers” discovered that with practice they could improve their driving. Just over two-thirds of each group successfully tried to improve their behavior. Perhaps unknown factors come into play here. Consider that 75% of intoxicated drivers stopped driving under the influence. Was this prompted by court ordered participation in a 12-step program, jail time or restricted licenses. Conceivably all the above.
Just as noteworthy in a negative way, 22% of distracted drivers haven’t tried to stop multi-tasking behind the wheel. Numerous studies discussed in AutoInformed say that distracted driving is the equivalent of Drunk Driving. Yet it is legal even though the phone and car companies could stop the problem by turning off cellular and web connected activities when the car is in motion, except for 911 calls.
Some driving trends are gender and geographically correlated. Females are more likely to be challenged about rushed driving. Males are more likely to be criticized on distracted, aggressive or intoxicated behavior. Regionally, the coasts are more likely to attribute hazardous driving to feeling rushed, as opposed to Midwestern drivers, who claim distraction is their greatest obstacle.
No matter, AutoInformed once again notes the highway signs in Texas – Drive Friendly.
And don’t get caught sitting on your seatbelt.
1 Envista Forensics. Launched in January 2017 and formerly known as PT&C|LWG Forensic Consulting, Envista satisfies a growing demand by insurance claims and legal professionals for a global, multi-disciplinary and highly-skilled forensic engineering partner. More than 300 professionals located in 30 offices on 4 continents make up the team.
Methodology: Envista surveyed 2,000 Americans who have behaved dangerously in one of four ways, in the last three months (except for intoxicated driving, which could have occurred any time in the last 12 months). Respondents ranged in age from 18 to 75 and represented all 50 U.S. states. Survey was conducted over two weeks in March 2018.
*Millennials: AKA Gen Y, with birth dates from the early 1980s to mid-1990s, reaching young adulthood at the turn of the century.