Rude, discourteous driving on upswing: Poll

Bad behaviour brings higher risk of crashes and road rage, warns ICBC

An angry driver makes discourteous gestures at a passing vehicle in 2008 on the Sea-to-Sky Highway north of Furry Creek.

It’s getting uglier on the roads, according to an opinion survey of B.C. motorists conducted for ICBC.

Fifty-five per cent of Lower Mainland residents believe drivers in their community have become less courteous over the past five years, the Ipsos Reid survey found.

Forty per cent said it’s about the same while just three per cent thought drivers are more courteous.

ICBC psychologist John Vavrik said rude, discourteous driving can trigger road rage incidents.

“Aggressive or careless driving such as cutting off other drivers, speeding, tailgating, talking on cellphones and not using proper signals is almost always what incites road rage,” Vavrik said. “While road delays play a part in adding to driving stress, it’s the behaviour of other drivers that leads to the greatest frustration.”

He said the heated emotions that result can impair a driver’s ability to concentrate, react and make smart driving decisions, putting them at increased risk of crashing.

On balance, those surveyed gave their fellow drivers a C letter grade for courteous driving, while residents in the rest of B.C. gave their local drivers a C+.

Most drivers denied they’re the problem.

A large majority gave themselves either an A or B grade for driving courtesy.

“There’s a clear disconnect between how drivers perceive their own driving behaviours and the reality of their driving,” Vavrik said.

The single biggest peeve?

Drivers who signal late or not at all – an infraction experienced by 82 per cent of those surveyed in the last three months. Seventy-one per cent reported being tailgated, 68 per cent said other drivers refused to let them merge or change lanes and half said they’d been cut off.

Less common grievances were drivers who honk horns, yell, make obscene gestures, wave arms or fists, flash lights or steal your parking spot.

Two per cent reported another driver got out of their vehicle to confront them.

Nobody admitted to doing that but 30 per cent admitted to honking in anger over the past three months and between 10 and 20 per cent said they’ve yelled, blocked a merging car, tailgated or failed to correctly signal in recent months.

Ninety-four per cent say they acknowledge with a wave when another driver is courteous.

Most of those surveyed said they believe their wave in turn encourages others to be more courteous.

Two-thirds said it’s important to them that other drivers acknowledge their courtesy, but the rest said it’s not that important.

The online survey polled 899 adult B.C. drivers.

 

VIDEO

A road rage incident in Langley earlier this year.

Just Posted

WATCH: Brother of missing Hope woman makes emotional appeal for more media attention

Next search for Shawnee Inyallie Nov. 18 along Highway 1 towards Boston Bar

Gas price drop expected to hit Fraser Valley today

Analyst says to take advantage, warns slight increase may follow

Chilliwack teen to take on the world after winning Canadian junior dog-handling national championship

Chilliwack’s Kayla Penney is heading to Crufts to compete for her first international title

Country talent Petunia returns to Bozzini’s in Chilliwack Saturday

Petunia, performing Nov. 17, is referred to as ‘The Savior of Country Music’

VIDEO: People with diabetes meet their alert dogs

A diabetic alert dog is trained to detect low blood sugar in people who have Type 1 diabetes

Hunter who saved B.C. man pinned inside smashed truck says ‘God was sending me to him’

Sayward man describes chance discovery of Duncan Moffat, 23, in northern Vancouver Island woods

Road-weary Canucks thumped 6-2 by Wild

Vancouver hosts the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday

Toronto private school didn’t report alleged sexual assault to police

Police say a sexual assault at an all-boys Catholic institution was not reported to them

China says butt out; Canada calls for release of “arbitrarily” detained Muslims

A Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman accused Canada’s envoy of going beyond their diplomatic roles

Dead Saskatoon tattoo artist’s skin removed and preserved

The skin was removed in honour of the well known artist’s work

Metro Vancouver mayors cancel Surrey LRT in favour of SkyTrain

TransLink will immediately suspend work on light rail

Lower Mainland couple missing in Thompson-Okanagan area

Barriere RCMP received a missing persons report for two senior overdue travellers

Vancouver Warriors cancel first 2 weeks of season as labour dispute continues

The announcement means games scheduled for Dec. 1 and Dec. 8 will no longer be played

Most Read