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Ireland Driving Skills Ireland Driving Skills

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Ireland Driving Skills

Published 4th July 2011Read Time 13 min

Some Irish motorists it would seem have their rose tinted glasses firmly on when it comes to how they perceive their own driving skills according to figures issued today by AA Motor Insurance.  69% of the 15,000 motorists surveyed during the latest AA Motor Insurance said they would rate their own driving as above average.  Inversely only 0.8% described their driving as below par. “While there are many excellent drivers out there, the findings of our survey do suggest that most of us are more than a little biased when it comes to our own driving.”  Says Conor Faughnan, Ex AA Director of Policy.  “None of us are perfect and most of us have unwittingly picked up bad and sometimes even dangerous habits that we are not aware of.”

Drivers in Ireland Survey Responses

Of note, the AA Motor Insurance poll also reveals that young males drivers, aged between 17 and 24 years, are most confident in their driving abilities despite being some of the least experienced drivers on our roads.  86.8% of those surveyed within this age group described themselves as above average drivers.  And of these, 44.9% rated themselves as well above average.  This is compared to 18.2% of females of the same age. “It is an old cliché that there are two things that no male will admit that he is bad at. Driving is one of them.” Says Faughnan. “There is a serious message in this. If we tend to over-estimate our own driving abilities then that can lead to excessive risk taking. It is this cavalier attitude to risk that is at the core of Ireland’s road safety problem.” In stark contrast to the overall results of this latest poll, an earlier Motor Insurance survey carried out last November found that just 20% of motorists believe the standard of driving on Irish roads by private road users to be high.  “When it comes to driving, we’re often quite slow to recognize our own faults and quick to criticize others.”  Says Faughnan.  “The results of these two polls illustrate this point down to a tee.” The AA also points out that despite how drivers perceive themselves the most important statistic of all – the number of road fatalities – is falling in Ireland. The RSA and the Garda issued data last Friday that shows that road deaths are down by 9% so far this year. While this is very encouraging the same data also shows that we still have a problem with road deaths among 16-24 year olds, precisely the age group most likely to over-estimate their driving ability. An examination of the results of the AA Motor Insurance poll on a county by county level identifies Laois, Roscommon, Westmeath and Limerick drivers as most likely to consider themselves as first rate drivers. The AA is inviting motorists to share their view on driver behavior via its blog www.theaa.ie/blog   Ends   Notes to the editor;   Fig. 1 Overview of how those motorists polled by the AA Motor Insurance poll would rate their own driving abilities. (Based on 15,170 responses)  
I would consider myself to be well above average 51.5%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 32.9%
I would consider myself to be about average 11.1%
I would consider myself to be somewhat below average 3.8%
I would consider myself to be well below average 0.8%
  Fig. 2 Percentage of motorists surveyed by the AA Motor Insurance poll who would classify themselves as a better than average driver split by gender.  (Based on 15,038 responses)  
Females (6,392)
I would consider myself to be well above average 18.2%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 42.9%
Males (8,646)
I would consider myself to be well above average 30.4%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 44.3%
  Fig. 3 Overview of how those motorists polled by the AA Motor Insurance poll would rate their own driving abilities categorized by age. (Based on 15,170 responses)   17 – 24 years (Based on 329 responses):  
All Males Females
I would consider myself to be well above average 29.2% 44.9% 18.2%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 44.7% 41.9% 46.9%
I would consider myself to be about average 23.1% 11.8% 30.7%
I would consider myself to be somewhat below average 2.4% 1.5% 3.1%
I would consider myself to be well below average 0.6% 0.0% 1.0%
  25 to 35 years (Based on 3,209 responses):  
All Males Females
I would consider myself to be well above average 27.2% 35.6% 19.4%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 44.2% 44.1% 44.4%
I would consider myself to be about average 27.6% 19.6% 35.1%
I would consider myself to be somewhat below average 0.9% 0.7% 1.0%
I would consider myself to be well below average 0.1% 0.1% 0.1%
  36 to 45 years (Based on 4,030 responses):  
All Males Females
I would consider myself to be well above average 27.1% 33.1% 20.1%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 43.3% 44.0% 42.4%
I would consider myself to be about average 29.0% 22.4% 36.9%
I would consider myself to be somewhat below average 0.5% 0.5% 0.5%
I would consider myself to be well below average 0.1% 0.0% 0.1%
  46 to 55 years (Based on 3,884 responses):  
All Males Females
I would consider myself to be well above average 24.2% 29.6% 16.5%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 43.7% 43.9% 43.4%
I would consider myself to be about average 31.6% 26.0% 39.6%
I would consider myself to be somewhat below average 0.4% 0.4% 0.5%
I would consider myself to be well below average 0.1% 0.1% 0.1%
  56 to 64 years (Based on 2421 responses)  
All Males Females
I would consider myself to be well above average 24.2% 26.9% 14.8%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 43.7% 44.9% 40.1%
I would consider myself to be about average 31.6% 27.1% 44.1%
I would consider myself to be somewhat below average 0.4% 0.9% 0.8%
I would consider myself to be well below average 0.1% 0.2% 0.3%
  65+ years (Based on 1,118 responses)  
All Males Females
I would consider myself to be well above average 20.1% 21.0% 16.8%
I would consider myself to be somewhat above average 44.8% 46.4% 39.6%
I would consider myself to be about average 34.4% 32.0% 42.8%
I would consider myself to be somewhat below average 0.4% 0.5% 0.4%
I would consider myself to be well below average 0.2% 0.1% 0.4%
    Fig. 3 Percentage of motorists surveyed by the AA Motor Insurance poll who would classify themselves as a better than average driver split by county.  (Based on 15,137 responses)  
County %
Carlow (153) 71.8%
Cavan (168) 64.1%
Clare (299) 70.7%
Cork (1,689) 70.5%
Donegal (227) 64.6%
Dublin (5,675) 67.9%
Galway (678) 69.3%
Kerry (257) 63.3%
Kildare (1,013) 69%
Kilkenny (200) 70%
Laois (186) 74.5%
Leitrim (81) 63%
Limerick (519) 72%
Longford (88) 71.6%
Louth (331) 70.4%
Mayo (278) 71.8%
Meath (707) 68.6%
Monaghan (80) 70.1%
Tipperary (340) 71.1%
Offaly (150) 71.4%
Roscommon (154) 73.4%
Sligo (159) 62.7%
Waterford (330) 71.1%
Westmeath (219) 72.5%
Wexford (422) 65.6%
Wicklow (674) 71.1%
 

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