Research for the RAC’s Report on Motoring 2016 has revealed that for some, attitudes towards handheld mobile use have worryingly relaxed over the last two years. The proportion of people who feel it is acceptable to take a quick call on a handheld phone has doubled from 7% in 2014 to 14% in 2016 and the percentage of drivers who feel it is safe to check social media on their phone when in stationary traffic, either at traffic lights or in congestion, has increased from 14% in 2014 to 20% in 2016. The percentage of drivers who said it was not acceptable to take a quick call at the wheel has correspondingly fallen 6% from 84% in 2014 to 78% today.
And it is not just attitudes that are shifting – actual behaviours are changing significantly too with the percentage of drivers who admit to having used a handheld mobile phone while driving having shot up to 31% which compares with just 8% who were prepared to admit this in 2014. Similarly the proportion of drivers who ‘own up’ to sending a text, email or posting on social media has risen to 19% today compared to 7% just two years ago.