RACQ survey highlights surge in aggressive driving incidents in Queensland

Insurer emphasises consequences of aggressive driving

RACQ survey highlights surge in aggressive driving incidents in Queensland

Motor & Fleet

By Roxanne Libatique

The Royal Automobile Club of Queensland (RACQ) has released findings from its latest Road Safety Survey, revealing a significant increase in the presence of aggressive drivers on Queensland's roads.

The survey, which collects annual data on road safety perceptions, found that 82.6% of respondents believe that instances of road anger have escalated over the past year, a substantial increase from 74.1% in 2020.

Factors contributing to aggressive driving behaviours

RACQ road safety and technical manager Joel Tucker said that the surge in aggressive driving behaviours could be attributed to factors such as impatience, misdirected emotions, and a general lack of respect or situational awareness among drivers.

“Aggressive driving has no place on our roads and only makes driving more dangerous,” he said. “Last year 277 people died on Queensland roads and 297 the year before that. We need to seriously change our road safety culture and start taking care of our fellow motorists, not intimidating and threatening them.”

According to the survey, the most frequently reported aggressive driving behaviour was tailgating, followed by unnecessary horn use, aggressive hand gestures, and risky lane changes.

On the bright side, Tucker noted a trend towards de-escalation, with a majority of drivers choosing to ignore or avoid aggressive drivers.

“When asked how they respond to aggressive driving, 60% of motorists said they ignore them and 55% said they avoid them, which is encouraging to see,” he said. “If you find yourself being targeted by an aggressive driver, try to stay calm and not respond aggressively as this will only make matters more dangerous.”

Consequences of aggressive driving behaviours

The survey served as a reminder to aggressive drivers about the potential legal consequences of their actions.

With an increasing number of motorists now using dashcams, and over 70% expressing their willingness to submit footage to the police, the likelihood of aggressive drivers facing penalties has risen significantly.

Tucker's advice to those confronted by aggressive driving is to remain calm and avoid retaliation.

“Almost one in four motorists own a dashcam and more than 70% said they'd be happy to hand footage to police, so the chance of aggressive drivers being caught is high,” he said. “You can't control the actions of others, but you can control your own. Take a breath, calm down, and let it go instead of doing something you will regret.”

Aside from providing road safety tips, RACQ is calling on Queenslanders to remain vigilant as home thefts in the state top $6 million.

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