Younger motorists are much less likely to offer others an apology when they make a mistake while driving, research has suggested.
The AXA Motoring Census report found that drivers under the age of 34 were almost half as likely as older motorists to beg someone’s pardon. In fact, of those aged 34 and younger, 10 per cent admitted to not apologising at all, suggesting young whipper-snappers are much less proficient in the manners department.
In contrast, drivers over the age of 55 were found to be the most likely to accept when a mistake was theirs (93 per cent), perhaps symptomatic of politeness coming with age.
To find the most polite motorists in the UK, you would need to travel to the East Midlands. There 98 per cent of respondents said they would make some effort to apologise for any wrong-doing on the road.
The types of apology offered by drivers in the wrong ranged from holding their hand up (69 per cent), flashing their indicators/hazards (9 per cent) while 11 per cent went as far as shouting “sorry” out of the window.
Mistakes most commonly made – and the most likely to make other road users stressed at the wheel – were driving over the speed limit in urban areas (33.6 per cent), failing to indicate at a roundabout (16.4 per cent), passing through traffic lights when on amber or red (13.45 per cent), failing to indicate in general (12.15 per cent) and using a horn out of frustration, not as a warning tool (11.5 per cent).
Driving too close to the motorist in front – aka tailgating – and a general lack of courtesy were also found to be pet hates.
Amazingly, one in twenty drivers said they never indicate at all, suggesting some UK motorists are either extremely lazy or have their minds on something other than the task at hand.
Although older motorists have a bad reputation when it comes to driving, statistics actually reveal those oldies are not just more polite, they are far less likely to crash, too.