Fleet News

Snow fear as winter approaches for UK drivers

Compacted snow and ice is the most feared weather condition for UK drivers, reveals the AA in advance of Road Safety Week, ahead of night-time fog, dazzling sunlight and strong wind.

One in twenty drivers (5%) went as far as to say they were ‘terrified’ of driving in compacted snow and ice, according to an AA/Populus poll.

The league table of most feared weather for driving shows the order of UK drivers’ weather nightmares: (showing percentage of drivers who rated their confidence in the condition at 6 or above, out of ten, when 10 = extremely confident):

  1. Compacted snow and ice (46%)
  2. Fog at night (53%)
  3. Fog during the day (60%)
  4. Very low temperatures and icy roads (62%)
  5. Heavy rain at night (68%)
  6. Falling snow (70%)
  7. Low dazzling sunlight i.e. spring / autumn evenings (70%)
  8. Strong winds (81%)
  9. Heavy rain during daytime (84%)

Confidence levels varied a great deal across different demographics with 11% of women saying compacted snow and ice terrified them compared to just 2% of men.

Young drivers (18-24) were the most confident age group for driving in heavy daytime rain with 25% saying they were ‘extremely confident’ at this. This fell to 12% for drivers over 65.

Drivers in the North East were the most confident in fog at night with nearly one in ten (9%) saying they were ‘extremely confident’ driving in this weather. In fact drivers in the North East were the most likely to say they were ‘extremely confident’ in every weather condition except dazzling sunlight, which they were joint most likely to say this with drivers from the South East.

In Wales, one lone driver admitted to being terrified of driving in daytime rain.

Drivers in London and Northern Ireland (4%) were the least likely to say they were ‘extremely confident’ at driving in compacted snow and ice. Those in Scotland (7%) and the North East (8%) were the most like to say this.

Jim Kirkwood, managing director of AA DriveTech, said: “Driving is the most dangerous work-related activity most employees undertake.

“So during the winter months when we are likely to experience adverse weather conditions in the UK it is even more important that employers make sure their drivers’ skills are up to scratch.

“Confidence issues – either too much or too little – and difficult weather conditions can be a dangerous mix so I would urge all fleets to ensure their training is up to par before the bad weather really hits.”

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  • The medical man - 15/11/2013 15:47

    Our organisation has to keep critical health services running 365 days a year. Every year It gets harder and harder as the narrow minded new religion of Green eco policy applied by those a long way from seeing what the 'front line' has to do, has driven many users to choose low CO2 rear wheel drive cars like the 1 or 3 Series, C Class. These are spectacularly useless in poor condtions. Even those picking cars like Qashqai's or Ford Kuga have had to go for the 2 wheel drive versions to avoid penalty. The result has been a lot more 'stay at home' and 'can't even get off the drive' days for the staff, extra strain on those that at least have a front wheel drive and terrible service to customers. Just remember, some people really need all weather capable vehicles pricing them out of them by policy is stupid.

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