Survey Highlights Road Rule Breakers
If you're concerned that the trappings of polite society and personal responsibility are disappearing, get ready for more bad news. A new survey from Cheap Car Insurance revealed some alarming answers when it comes to how people really feel about the rules of the road.
The site's surveyors polled some 2,000 American drivers to gauge if people's driving habits would change if there weren't any road rules. Without consequences, would people still engage in safe driving habits?
The answer: It depends on who you're asking, but a too-large portion of people (we're looking at you, people under 34) would break the rules if they could get away with it.
Some of the most interesting findings:
- Drivers in South Carolina, Kansas and Louisiana are the top three in the "I'd flee the scene of an accident if there were no consequences" category. More than a quarter of respondents in each of these states said that they'd definitely hit and run if they could.
- If car insurance weren't required by law, more men than women under the age of 45 would forego it; however, that reverses as people get older, and more women than men age 45 and over would forego insurance if it weren't mandatory.
- More than a quarter of people age 18-34 would happily smoke weed and drive if it weren't illegal.
- Similarly, youngsters think that driving under the influence of alcohol is more dangerous than marijuana. Only 18.6 percent of people in the 18-24 age range would drink and drive if it weren't illegal, compared to the 27.5 percent of them who would smoke a joint and drive. (Here's some unsolicited advice for everyone: Drive sober, always. Neither weed nor alcohol is ever a good idea before getting behind the wheel of 2,000 pounds of steel.)
- Finally, in what is probably a surprise to no one, the oldest among us seem to have the greatest propensity for safe driving habits, even if consequences vanished. That whole "with age comes wisdom" thing is true.
I suppose there is some solace in the fact that a majority of folks would still adhere to safe and responsible driving behaviors were there no rules or consequences. Nonetheless, the idea that there are significant percentages of people who'd drive drunk or flee the scene of an accident in the absence of consequences gives me great pause. Perhaps it's a good day to be grateful that we have road rules — and to make a concerted effort to stick to them.