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

Latest plan is to fly trapped fish by helicopter over Big Bar slide

Multi-pronged plan set in motion to freesalmon blocked by landslide in the Fraser River

Light trucks are being converted to gas and propane in City of Chilliwack fleet

It came to light when tenders for certain trucks were deemed non-compliant without propane option

Family of missing Chilliwack senior with dementia frustrated with situation, heartened by community support

Nine days since Grace was last seen the question remains: ‘How can an 86-year-old just disappear?’

One-day delay for trial of Chilliwack pastor facing child porn charges

Main Street Church’s former executive pastor John Vermeer set for seven-day trial

Rail group to bring plan to Abbotsford council

Group is calling for plans to run trains on rail line between Chilliwack and Surrey

3 dead, 2 missing in northern B.C: Here’s what we know so far

Lucas Fowler, 23, and his girlfriend, Chynna Deese, were shot and killed on July 14 or 15

Tubing world record broken on Vancouver Island

But record for length of tubes linked together still has to be confirmed

The Beaverton’s sharp satire thrives in polarized political climate

Canadian TV series’ third season to air Tuesday on CTV after “The Amazing Race Canada”

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Okanagan Air Cadet challenges gender-exclusive haircut policy

Haircut regulation inspires challenge around gender identity

Hazmat incident closes down Lower Mainland street

One person is believed to be dead, police said

Unsealed record suggests U.S. man convicted of murdering Vancouver Island couple left DNA on zip tie in 1987

William Talbott is set to be sentenced Wednesday in the murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg

Pride flags stolen from Lower Mainland church

Went missing sometime Friday night, says Maple Ridge reverend

Most Read