Children main cause of road rage

Ryan Lee and Lewis Peart, who appear in advertising for Vauxhall's Meriva and Zafira products

Ryan Lee and Lewis Peart, who appear in advertising for Vauxhall's Meriva and Zafira products

Children are the main cause of road rage, according to a new survey of motorists.

A third of men only experience road rage when the kids are in the car and a quarter of women admit to losing their temper on the “school run”.

Both blamed squabbling kids in the back seat and extra cars on the road adding to their stresses.

The online survey of 1,000 British drivers was carried out by used car supermarket Carcraft.

The survey showed women admitted to being much less tolerant than men about traffic jams, weaving motorbikes and rudeness, with men more likely to exercise kindness to others by giving learners and old people a wide berth.

Psychologist Mike Guttridge comments: “Having the kids in the car is distracting and, like being on the phone, may affect reaction times to stimulus on the roads.

“We’re all naturally protective of our families, so if we are the victim of bad driving, or just running late and a bit stressed, we may have an adrenalin surge, which is expressed as road rage.

“Women tend to be less aggressive than men, so it’s no surprise that female road rage is triggered by a protective, ‘lioness’ instinct.”

A third of drivers of both sexes said two-a-breast cyclists, annoyed them, with 28% citing tail-gating as another cause of anger on the road.

But 51% claimed to display courteous driving behaviours such as allowing other cars out in queues and waving to say “thank you” to other drivers.

Julia Dallimore, head of marketing at Carcraft, says of the survey: “The results of the survey weren’t entirely surprising as most parents will know that driving the kids can really drive mums and dads round the bend!

“The good news is, Britain does seem to be driving happy, with physical acts of road rage very rare and only 4% of drivers claiming to experience road rage on a regular basis.”

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