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Driving advice

Aggression on UK roads getting worse says new study

A new report published by safety charity IAM RoadSmart suggests that aggressive motorists and cyclists are becoming a bigger problem on UK roads


Increased aggression between car drivers and cyclists is putting lives at risk in the UK with 65% of drivers saying aggressive cyclists have been a threat to their personal safety, according to a new survey.

The research also shows that 78% of drivers claim other motorists have threatened them. And it comes as new Department for Transport (DfT) figures reveal that one in 12 of the 1,339 deaths on Britain’s roads in 2021 were linked to aggressive behaviour.

The findings, from safety charity IAM RoadSmart, show that the aggression problem is worsening on both sides of the road-using rivalry, with 60% of drivers surveyed believing that aggressive cyclists are a bigger problem now, than compared with three years ago. A further 63% of drivers said they thought aggressive motorists have become more of an issue over the same time period. 

Demonstrating the conflict between motorists and cyclists, a driving safety report by the charity found that there was limited support for a new law which would assume that the driver is always responsible for any collision with a cyclist or pedestrian in an urban area – 61 per cent of those questioned were against this.

“The government has introduced a range of laws in recent years in an effort to fix the daily conflicts we see between motorists and cyclists,” says Neil Greig, director of policy and research at IAM RoadSmart. “But if our research is anything to go by, this has largely been to no avail, with the majority of respondents still reporting aggression and conflict among road users.

“There is no quick-fix to this issue, but our findings shed light on the urgent need for the government to maintain its education campaigns on the new Highway Code, and continue to invest in safe road markings for more vulnerable road users to minimise the chance of conflict wherever possible.

“In the meantime all road users, whether on two or four wheels, should exercise calmness and restraint to help us all use Britain’s roads safely.”

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Tom Johnston
Tom Johnstonhttp://johnstonmedia.com/
Tom Johnston was the first-ever reporter on national motoring magazine Auto Express. He went on to become that magazine’s News Editor and Assistant Editor, and has also been Motoring Correspondent for the Daily Star and contributor to the Daily and Sunday Express. Today, as a freelance writer, content creator and copy editor, Tom works with exciting and interesting websites and magazines on varied projects.
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