Driving Home for Christmas? Watch Out for Millennial Drivers…

During December 2016, police in England and Wales stopped more than 100,000 vehicles, with around 5,698 breath tests failed, refused, or testing positive.

Two years on, are our roads any safer?


A recent survey on British driving habits, conducted by Berkshire-based UK car leasing experts Fulton Leasing, reveal that those falling into the ‘millennial’ age group display the most dangerous habits behind the wheel.

The results of the survey – conducted with 1,000 British drivers, aged between 18 and 65 – indicate that the millennial generation is responsible for the majority of frequent traffic violations including tailgating, last-minute cutting into slip lane queues and using mobile phones while driving.

Distracted driving

Distracted drivers account for approximately 25% of all motor vehicle fatalities. Despite the formal mobile phone ban being in place and enforceable since March 2017, Fulton’s study shows that an alarming number of 25 to 34 years old – along with their younger counterparts (aged 18 to 24) – still use hand-held mobile phones while driving, with 13% and 12% (respectively) admitting to doing so.

Tano Di Girolamo, Managing Director at Fulton Leasing, said: “A recent Highways England campaign raised awareness of just how dangerous using a mobile phone is while driving, as it can drastically impair a driver’s focus on the road and other cars around them. Our study found millennial motorists admit to this, and other unsafe habits more than any other age group – which could leave them and motorists around them in serious danger.

“It is also surprising to see such a high volume of mobile phone use whilst driving, across all age groups, when technology such as Apple CarPlay and Bluetooth connectivity is becoming more prevalent in standard equipment lists.”

Traffic light displays and driver behaviours

45% of millennial drivers aged 25 to 34 admit to accelerating through amber lights.

Additionally, nearly 11% of them admitted to running a red light if they have just changed and no one is around, which is the highest percentage across all age groups.

1 in 5 millennial drivers also revealed they don’t indicate at roundabouts,; a mistake which can both put fellow drivers at risk, and cause a serious accident.

Other dangerous habits

9% of millennial drivers state not paying attention to blind spots, while their younger counterparts performed worse still, with 11% of those aged 18 to 24 owning up to not carrying out the appropriate checks before moving off.

Survey respondents also faced questions about tailgating – a ‘practice’ responsible for causing 1 in 8 serious accidents on UK roads.

According to the survey, an average of 9% across all age groups admit to tailgating other vehicles. Again, the highest percentage of offenders can be found in the millennial category, with 14 per cent owning up to doing so.

Millennial drivers should also polish their skills for motorway driving, as the study revealed that 14% of young drivers aged between 25 and 35 have a tendency to loiter in the middle lane.

Another guilty confession is cutting into slip lane queues at the last moment, which can cause fellow drivers to react quickly or risk getting into a collision. Among all age groups, the millennial drivers seem to lead the way, with 21% of respondents in this age group holding their hands up. Millennials were followed by 45 to 54 year-olds (15%) and 35-44 (13%), who also admitted to last-minute ‘line-hopping.’

Drivers were also questioned about whether they felt they would pass their driving test if they were to take it again. Surprisingly, 1 in 5 millennial admitted that they might find re-taking their driving test difficult, which makes them the least confident group among all respondents.

Notes for editors:

1. The survey was conducted during October 2018 with 1,000 participants.
2. For access to the full survey report, or to obtain a further comment, please contact Sandra Kaminska at CLD via email at Sandra@cld.agency or on 01628 782350.