A poll of 3,000 motorists by Thrifty Car & Van Rental reveals a staggering eight out of ten (85%) drivers admit to gambling amber lights in an attempt to race through the traffic.
Meanwhile, nearly four out of ten (38%) say they rarely stop if the lights are on amber. Sixteen per cent (16%) even confessed that amber is like a green light to them.
Worryingly more than one in ten (13%) motorists has had an accident or near miss as a result of belting through an amber signal. Half (50%) have been shouted at by their passenger and more than a quarter (26%) have been sworn or beeped at by other drivers.
If a driver crosses a light on amber, it is an offence, unless they can show that it was unsafe to stop. For some time The Department for Transport has been researching the use of continuous flashing amber signals on traffic lights at quiet times, in a bid to ease traffic flow.
However, this move has been rejected by safety groups in light of confusing drivers and pedestrians.
The poll also revealed that more than a third (35%) of respondents didn’t know it was an offence to pass through an amber signal as it’s about to turn red and weren’t aware of the £60 fine or penalty points if caught.
Linda Malliff, director of central services at Thrifty Car & Van Rental, said: “When it comes to chancing the lights in a rental car, it is still a very serious crime which could land the motorist a £60 fine or three penalty points. Drivers must think twice and understand that by ignoring an amber light which is about to turn red, they could be putting themselves and other road users’ lives at risk.”
The Top Ten worst places in the UK for ‘ambler gamblers’ are:
5. Brighton and Hove