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Bristol drivers are Britain's worst for road rage, according to new research

Looking for Britain's road rage capital? This study suggests Bristolians are top of the table...

Bristol drivers are the UK's worst for road rage, according to a new study by car finance company, Zuto.

A table-topping 43 per cent of Bristolians surveyed admitted to having road rage occasionally when driving.

Zuto compiled the data to find out what annoys drivers in the UK, and broke the numbers down by city.

The Bristol Post reports its home city topped the charts for road rage drivers.

In London, 26 per cent of drivers surveyed admitted to having road rage either most of the time, or every time they drive.

In Belfast and Manchester the figure was 23 per cent, while in Birmingham and Sheffield it was 17 and 15 per cent respectively.

Bristolians were also the most likely to be annoyed by 'late/no idicators' at 61 per cent, while 57 per cent said they are frustrated by 'cars getting too close behind you'.

At the top of the list of things that annoy Bristol drivers was potholes (71 per cent). Long-duration traffic lights frustrated 29 per cent of the motorists surveyed.

In the regional breakdown, BMW drivers were judged the most annoying in every city, apart from Liverpool and Leeds who said Range Rover drivers, and Manchester where it was those behind the wheel of Minis.

Zuto did not ask if drivers were annoyed by cyclists or other forms of transport.

The study showed that 25 per cent of UK drivers admit to swearing at others while driving — seven per cent are prepared to get out their vehicle to confront another road user.

Boy racers were voted the third biggest behavioural pet peeve, behind tailgating and not indicating, and 31 per cent admitted being annoyed by drivers not thanking them for giving way.

More generally, potholes were voted the biggest annoyance on UK roads (61 per cent), while speed bumps annoy 31 per cent of the people surveyed by Zuto.

Earlier this month the founder of Fair Fuel UK, which lobbies the government over fuel duty claimed that the new Highway Code changes encourage road rage.

> "Lunatic Highway Code" encourages road rage and gives cyclists carte blanche, Fair Fuel UK boss claims

A 2017 study found that almost two-thirds of UK cyclists (63 per cent) have experienced aggressive behaviour from motorists, while over half (56 per cent) believe the problem has increased significantly since 2012.

The survey also found that 85 per cent of cyclists were concerned about the behaviour of motorists whilst on their bikes, whereas 94 per cent said they felt safe and confident on the road whilst driving.

Dan joined road.cc in 2020, and spent most of his first year (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. At the start of 2022 he took on the role of news editor. Before joining road.cc, Dan wrote about various sports, including football and boxing for the Daily Express, and covered the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for The Non-League Paper. Part of the generation inspired by the 2012 Olympics, Dan has been 'enjoying' life on two wheels ever since and spends his weekends making bonk-induced trips to the petrol stations of the south of England.

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14 comments

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JustTryingToGet... | 2 years ago
1 like

The worst driving I have experienced is in Crawley. I spent a couple of years doing about 10 miles a day, 3 days a week. Absolutely disgraceful driving standards. As usual it was a minority if drivers but the worst really were the worst... murderous intent often confirmed by screaming out of the window.

I'm sure it's not a coincidence that bizarrely Crawley banned bikes from some bike lanes (however the bus drivers didn't understand which lanes bikes were allowed in)and very odd give way lines on side roads which in theory gave the bike priority but as they were ignored by motorists you'd have death wish to claim your priority.

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brianlescargot | 2 years ago
1 like

I don't know about Bristol but I do visit Cheltenham (not that far away) and the driving there is the worst I have seen in any UK town. Folks drive like lunatics on very narrow streets with parked cars on either side. Lots of cyclists too out at night in dark clothing and no lights. 

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griggers | 2 years ago
1 like

No we fu*king aren't!!!

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Mary Willoughby | 2 years ago
5 likes

As this is self diagnosed, could it be that Bristol drivers are more in touch with their emotions?  Maybe they're just honest and open about their feelings - bless.

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chrisonabike | 2 years ago
6 likes

Too many squirrels on the road.

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hawkinspeter | 2 years ago
1 like

It's probably due to congestion.

We were riding in a taxi the other evening and after a couple of comments (from Mrs Hawkinspeter) about how busy the traffic was, the driver started to expound on his theory of road congestion. He explained that Bristol City Council has been gradually sabotaging the outer areas with junctions that don't work very well (e.g. the hamburger junction near Longwell Green) and is now moving to sabotage the central areas (e.g. Park St) so that drivers will face more and more congestion. His reasoning is that now the Council can go and get funding from central Government to address the excessive congestion and thus generate a lot of money. He also mentioned the Bristol Bridge closure that is generating a fair amount of fines  from motorists (https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/bristol-bridge-bus-gate-raises-6623895).

I wonder how much truth is in that, but realistically, our air is still over legal levels, so the only logical thing to do is to prioritise non-motor traffic.

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Bmblbzzz replied to hawkinspeter | 2 years ago
3 likes

Isn't the hamburger junction actually in S Glos? The only others I remember seeing were somewhere like Basingstoke or Bracknell, but again on a d/c ring road. 

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hawkinspeter replied to Bmblbzzz | 2 years ago
0 likes
Bmblbzzz wrote:

Isn't the hamburger junction actually in S Glos? The only others I remember seeing were somewhere like Basingstoke or Bracknell, but again on a d/c ring road. 

I think you're right, so maybe not a Bristol conspiracy.

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brooksby replied to hawkinspeter | 2 years ago
2 likes
hawkinspeter wrote:

He also mentioned the Bristol Bridge closure that is generating a fair amount of fines from motorists (https://www.bristolpost.co.uk/news/bristol-news/bristol-bridge-bus-gate-raises-6623895).

Only from stupid motorists who don't pay attention to road signs... (or possibly selfish ones who think the rules don't apply to them).

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alchemilla | 2 years ago
5 likes

I doubt it's worse in Bristol, probably the same everywhere. Figures are meaningless really.

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Wolfcastle50 replied to alchemilla | 2 years ago
2 likes

No, it really is bad.

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Bmblbzzz replied to alchemilla | 2 years ago
2 likes

From the article it seems that "road rage" is quite broadly and subjectively defined, and doesn't necessarily have anything to do with rage against cyclists. One thing I agree with though, there are some dreadful, huge potholes on main roads in Bristol. I hit one on the Gloucester Rd today that, if it had been dark, would probably have had me off. Not just a standard pothole but where a trench had been dug and not filled in properly.

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mdavidford replied to Bmblbzzz | 2 years ago
0 likes

Well it's not particularly clear, but it sounds like the 'how often do you get road rage?' and 'what annoys you on the roads?' questions were two different things. 71% of Bristolians were apparently annoyed by potholes, but only 43% admitted getting road rage, so they can't simply be counting annoyance at potholes as road rage.

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brooksby replied to alchemilla | 2 years ago
1 like
alchemilla wrote:

I doubt it's worse in Bristol, probably the same everywhere. Figures are meaningless really.

True.  87% of all statistics are just made up on the spot.

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