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Young passengers urged to ‘speak up’ about distracted drivers

Young people are failing to speak up if a driver is distracted, a survey of passengers and drivers aged between 17 and 25 has revealed.

Out of 1,000 respondents, 91 per cent admitted they had felt uncomfortable or anxious as a passenger and 66 per cent said the driver was distracted, rising to 78 per cent among for those aged between 17 and 19.

Yet despite the high number of distracted driver instances, 41 per cent admitted they refrained from saying anything. One-fifth said it was because they would be embarrassed if they misjudged the driver’s age.

Goodyear Tyres UK PR manager Kate Rock said: “No one should be made to feel uncomfortable whilst a passenger in any vehicle, whether the driver is older or younger.

“Peer pressure is a strong influence on young people today, but by not approaching the subject of poor driving, it is putting themselves, the driver and other road users at risk.”

The survey was conducted by Goodyear as part of its Young Driver Programme. It previously looked into crash statistics and found 41 per cent of those aged between 17 and 25 had been involved in an accident or near-miss within the last 12 months – 23 per cent of which admitted it was because they were distracted.

“It is vital to speak up if you see a driver is distracted, so that we, as a nation, begin to view safe driving as the celebrated way to drive – for all ages – and work to reduce the road crash statistics,” Rock added.

Young drivers represent a relatively small portion of motorists in the UK yet are involved in a significant portion of accidents. Old people, meanwhile, are often thought to be more dangerous but are statistically safer.

Newbie drivers may benefit from reading 10 essential tips for new, young or inexperienced drivers.

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