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Are we (really) respectful of the Highway Code?

Following the results of the 11th barometer of the Vinci Autoroutes Foundation, are we really respectful of the highway code? Elements of answers.

Each year, the Vinci Autoroutes Foundation publishes its barometer with figures related to our behavior on the road. It is clear that the French, as a general rule, allow themselves a lot of freedom with the Highway Code.

What are the most common offenses?

Despite the Road Safety campaigns, this study carried out by Ipsos among 12,400 people in 11 European countries – including 2,400 French – shows that many of us are breaking some rules of the Highway Code. Among the most common offenses, 91% of French drivers exceed speed limits, 65% go to amber light or when it has just turned red and 57% forget to put their flashing light to overtake or change direction.

The telephone arrives a little later with 27% of our fellow citizens sending and / or reading an SMS or an email while driving; 17% of them call without a hands-free kit.

Incivility and inattention at the heart of the debates

From this last offense of cell phone use, two other factors also stand out for us: inattention and incivility.

Despite a slight decrease, inattention remains one of the main causes of fatal accidents with 1 in 10 drivers having already had, or almost having, an accident because of the use of the telephone while driving.

Regarding incivility, 65% of French people admit that they sometimes insult other drivers and 16% admit that they are no longer the same person when they are behind the wheel. However, if the road remains a fertile ground for tensions, these figures should be put into perspective. Indeed, there is a slight decrease compared to last year with a respective inflection of -5 and -4 points.

Traffic laws and health rules in positive correlation

This eleventh barometer of the Vinci Autoroutes Foundation embeds an unprecedented element compared to previous years. Health crisis requires, this study draws a parallel between driving behavior and in everyday life. The latter shows that people who take liberties with the Highway Code also take it with the sanitary rules then in effect.

And the figure is alarming! According to Ipsos and the 2,400 French people surveyed, 74% of drivers who take liberties with the Highway Code do the same with health regulations. Regular French recalcitrant are more often men (28% against 22% of women), young people (36% of under 35s, against 28% of 35-64 and 11% of 65 and over) and residents rural areas (28%).

The first reason put forward to explain the non-respect of the rule by those who agree to deviations is the same, whether it concerns the sanitary instructions or the Code.
of the road. According to them, the rules would not always be adapted to the situation or consistent (60% say so about the Highway Code against 48% about health rules)

Source: Vinci Autoroutes Foundation

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