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 Drivers Find Little Wrong with Their Own Driving Habits, But Plenty in Others’ - Americans’ Pet Peeves Behind the Wheel

NORTHBROOK, Ill., Aug. 27, 2003 – Other drivers drive us crazy.  It’s true – aren’t there days when you think the road would be so much safer if the other guy just knew how to drive?  Sound familiar?  As you sit in your car fighting traffic, you can take comfort in knowing that the vast majority of drivers around you describe their driving behavior as “safe,” “reliable,” confident” or “smart.”  You may take less comfort in knowing that many of these same drivers also admit to driving fast or driving after drinking.  What about you?  Can you admit what kind of driver you really are?

Allstate recently conducted a survey that reveals that how people describe themselves as drivers is often at odds with how they actually drive. The Allstate “You Are What You Drive” survey reveals both serious and fun information about American drivers’ opinions about issues ranging from dream road trips to the annoying driving habits of others.

According to the Allstate survey, 90 percent of American drivers believe they are “safe” drivers and 79 percent consider themselves to be “cautious” drivers.  However, the survey also reveals that one in three drivers admit to being a “fast” driver and almost all admit to having “raced” with other drivers on at least one occasion. And 22 percent admit to having driven after having had three or more alcoholic drinks in the past five years. 

"We're not surprised to learn that people feel good about their own driving habits,” said Todd DeYoung, vice president and acting chief marketing officer, Allstate Insurance Company. “Unfortunately, the facts don't always agree.  Perhaps this is a wake-up call that people need to pay better attention to their driving habits."

On the lighthearted side, the Allstate survey shows that American drivers have strong opinions about the most annoying habits of other drivers.  When asked about a list of behaviors, nearly nine in ten drivers said they are very annoyed when other drivers “drive too close,” “throw trash out of the car window” or “don’t use their signals.”  Following closely behind, 84 percent responded they’re very annoyed by others who “drive slow in the passing lane,” while 83 percent cited drivers who “weave in and out of traffic.”

Rounding out the list of most-annoying habits of other drivers were “hogging the road,” cited by 71 percent of respondents, “riding the brakes” (69 percent), and “talking on their cell phone” (61 percent).

Insurance is a fact of life for car owners, but that doesn’t mean they spend a lot of time thinking about it.  In fact, 17 percent of those surveyed admit they have “no clue” what their insurance would cover in case of an accident.

And when it comes to buying auto insurance, cost is the overriding factor in determining where to buy insurance – 64 percent of those surveyed said cost was their top consideration for buying insurance.

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