Quarter of millennials so addicted to social media they check their accounts at the wheel

Quarter of millennials so addicted to social media they check their accounts at the wheel
Quarter of millennials so addicted to social media they check their accounts at the wheel

A quarter of millennials say that they are so desperate to keep up with social media that they have checked their Facebook, Twitter or Instagram accounts while driving.

Despite the hefty punishments for using a phone while driving, 23 per cent of 18 to 34-year-olds admit to using social media at the wheel, with 28 per cent saying they have sent text messages.

And five per cent say that checking their social media feeds while driving is a daily habit despite the inherent dangers of the distraction.

In comparison, 11 per cent of all drivers admit to having used social media in the car at some point.

Amber gamblers

The shocking behaviour was revealed in a poll created to find British motorists’ worst habits at the wheel.

The survey of 2,000 drivers by Privilege Car Insurance found that more than half of drivers (56 per cent) admitted to speeding up to get through an amber traffic light before it turns red, making it the most common bad habit.

The most common bad habits while driving

  1. Accelerating to get past an amber light before it turns red – 56%
  2. Eating or drinking – 50%
  3. Refusing to let people in when in a queue of traffic – 45%
  4. Driving with dog(s) in the car without properly securing them – 38%
  5. Indicating too late before changing lanes or turning – 32%
  6. Fiddling with personal belongings – 31%
  7. Getting distracted fiddling with sat-nav – 27%
  8. Failing to indicate at all before changing lanes or turning – 26%
  9. Checking hair, make-up or appearance in the mirror – 24%
  10. Not checking the mirror before signalling – 22%
  11. Deliberately approaching a roundabout in the wrong lane because it has a shorter queue – 20%
  12. = Having a long (hands-free) phone-conversation – 19%
    = Cutting in front of other drivers – 19%
  13. Sending or checking text messages – 15%
  14. Checking social media or other apps – 11%

Half of drivers said that they ate or drank while at the wheel and 45 per cent said that they refused to let other drivers in when in a queue of traffic.

Other problematic behaviour included indicating late or not at all before changing lane, getting distracted by in-car technology and drivers checking their appearance in the mirror rather than focusing on the road.

Danger to others

More than half of drivers admit to racing to get through on amber. ( Picture: Shutterstock)
More than half of drivers admit to racing to get through on amber. ( Picture: Shutterstock)

A worrying three per cent of those questioned – equivalent to half a million drivers – admitted that their driving was so bad that the roads would be safer if they lost their licence.

Charlotte Fielding, head of Privilege Car Insurance said: “We all develop bad driving habits, many of which can make us less safe on the road, but it’s particularly worrying to see the impact of social media on our driving.

“At Privilege, we want to encourage all drivers to be as safe as possible, taking care of themselves, passengers and others on the road, and this includes ensuring concentration levels remain high.

“Hopefully by identifying some of our worst habits, we can create more awareness amongst drivers, which will help to eliminate them.”

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