Guy Frobisher, director of safety at Continental Tyres which surveyed 6,200 motorists on their driving history and skills said: “It seems that second time around is perfect when it comes to the best drivers.
“Second time passers appear to fare better, especially when it comes to driving safely and considerately. Perhaps this is down to concentrating more and taking into account different road conditions and other drivers.
“First time passers know how to handle a car but some might be over-confident and that can quickly lead to recklessness. Safety should be the priority for all drivers, this includes making sure the car is roadworthy before you set off and being aware of issues such as stopping distances being affected by weather.”
Second time passers are also less prone to being cautioned for using their mobile phone behind the wheel, have had the fewest accidents in the last 5 years and are unlikely to scare passengers with their driving.
However, the research also found the more attempts Brits take to pass their test, the severity and frequency of their bad habits increase.
Rather unsurprisingly, drivers who need a dismal four, five or six efforts before making the grade have the worst record when sat behind the wheel. They run more red lights, admit to driving the wrong way down a one-way street and have been stopped by police for speeding more than any other driver. They have also had their car clamped, hit stationary objects whilst trying to park their car and claimed on their insurance more than anyone else.
The nationwide survey of 17-65 year old motorists quizzed them on 20 aspects of their driving life – including who would feel confident teaching others to drive, who have been issued parking tickets and how often they take their eyes off the road. The sometimes surprising statistics include:
* The average first-timer passer emerged as being able to perform driving manoeuvres – such as parallel parking, hill start and three point turns - the best
* Second time passers are least likely to drive at a snail’s pace
* Those who need six goes or more are cheeky enough to clip a car and not own up
* Motorists who enjoy first-test success are least likely to stall the engine and happy to teach others to drive
* Those who have three or more tries to pass are guilty of letting their eyes wander off the road ahead
* The average driver has broken the law four times in the last month but has escaped being caught
* The typical motorist currently has three points on their licence and takes at least two years to become a confident driver from the moment they pass their test
Also included in the survey was a selection of the worst driving distractions. Items topping the list include re-tuning the radio (51 per cent), talking to a passenger (49 per cent) and listening to loud music (44 per cent).
For more information on driving safety and Continental Tyres, please visit http://www.tyresforlife.co.uk or http://www.conti-