Reported behaviours

Many surveys are organized by various sponsors, both public and private. The topics covered are varied: alcohol, telephone driving, professional road risk, behaviour of parents who drive.... ONISR monitors and presents a panel of results each year in the road safety report.

Various road safety surveys

Driver surveys are relevant means of analysing the behaviour of the population. The responses of the respondents are based on declarative. The results of surveys complement the accidentality study or field observations.

Some organizations conduct annual barometers, which make it possible to study changes in behaviour over time.

Improved speed enforcement, but progress still needs to be made

With its 2020 barometer, Axa Prevention was able to highlight the evolution of certain practices over the decade, including the question of the evolution of speeding. In 2020, and in view of the health crisis, the driving habits of the French have improved significantly, with 53% of drivers being good drivers (+6 points compared to 2019). 74% of drivers surveyed drive 10 or 20 km/h over the speed limit, 7 points less than in 2019. Bad driving habits are also declining, such as driving through amber lights (64%, down 6 points) and forgetting to use an indicator (down 7 points to 34%).

Telephone use and other distractors: a risky behaviour

The AXA Prévention barometer also addresses the use of telephones while driving. In 2004, 22% of drivers reported using a telephone while driving. Today, with the meteoric rise in the rate of equipment, 4G and GPS applications on the phone that has become a smartphone, usage has changed dramatically: 69% of French people admit to using their mobile phone while driving, whatever the use (call, message, social networks). Moreover, 78% say they have already made a call while driving, 72% have already sent a message and 65% have already consulted social networks.

The TSICA 2019 barometer (Telephone and Driving Information System, financed by the MAIF Foundation, Université Gustave Eiffel) also notes the development of increasingly complex and dangerous uses of the telephone at the wheel (sending text messages, taking photos, surfing the Internet and using social networks, etc.). The use of integrated hands-free kits is also increasing. They are used by 65% of drivers who make phone calls, and 46% of those who make frequent calls.

Reported drowsiness at the wheel among almost a third of drivers

According to the AXA prevention barometer, 34% of respondents say they take the road despite being tired.

The 6th edition of the European barometer published by the Vinci Autoroutes Foundation also addresses the subject of drowsiness on the road. 43% of French (and European) drivers (wrongly) consider that they drive as well or even better when they are tired, while 13% declare having already had or nearly had an accident due to drowsiness. The average driving time before a break is 2h49 in France (2 hours are recommended), compared with 3h19 in Europe.

Alcohol and drugs still a problem

In 2004, 19% of French people reported driving after drinking more than 4 or 5 glasses of alcohol. In 2019, this figure will fall to 6% according to the AXA prevention barometer. The Vinci Autoroutes barometer indicates that 16% of respondents sometimes take to the road above the authorised limit, 11% after having taken medicines likely to impair their vigilance, and 1% after having taken narcotics.

An increase in incivility

According to the Vinci Motorway Barometer, all incivilities are on the rise, characterised in particular by the fear of aggressive behaviour by another driver felt by 87% of respondents. Generally speaking, there is a certain amount of mistrust between categories of users, since 80% of cyclists say they have already been afraid of the aggressive behaviour of a motorist and 76% of pedestrians have already been brushed by a cyclist or a scooter on the pavement. The latter, which is growing rapidly in urban areas, is being singled out for criticism as 84% of respondents to the NextBase Opinion Way survey consider these users to be irresponsible.

Moreover, this lack of trust in others could be explained by a less diligent respect for the road safety rules. 55% of car drivers say that they do not scrupulously follow the rules, while this figure rises to 69% for cyclists and even 75% for motorised two-wheelers. 86% of pedestrians admit that they do not always cross at a pedestrian crossing.

Motorist parents not always blameless

According to a new survey by Bébé confort and the association Prévention Routière, 2 out of 3 children are still poorly or not tied up in the car. Among the serious errors noted: missing car seat, incorrect assembly of the car seat, child sitting in the front... Only half of 2-year-olds travel with their backs to the road (recommended but not mandatory measure). The booster seat is abandoned too early, 24% of children aged 5, 28% at 6, more than a third at 7 and 8 and up to 2/3 at 9, while the use of a suitable seat is mandatory until 10 years old and helps to avoid certain serious injuries.

A study of Attitude Prevention conducted by OpinionWay shows that 64% of children have already noticed a risky attitude from their parents. And, while 53% of parents say they are more cautious with their children on board, 87% say they have already engaged in risky behaviour in their presence. Also, 54% of children report having seen their parents use the phone while driving when 38% of parents recognize the use of the phone.