Bad weather and driving in the dark are the main fears for new motorists

4th September 2015


Tricky weather conditions, driving at night and alone top the list of the main anxieties for new drivers according to research by car insurer, Admiral MultiCar.

Admiral surveyed 2,000 motorists about their experience while they were learning to drive and after they first passed their driving test. It found the main motivation for learning to drive is the need to be independent, according to 62% of motorists asked. Half said the main reason they learned was to be able to get to places at their own pace while 41% said they did it to be able to get to work.

Admiral MultiCar found that the first solo drive is full of worries for most new drivers. The number one anxiety, at 30%, is driving in difficult weather conditions. This is followed by driving in the dark, at 29% and driving alone, with 23%. Only 15% said crashing was their biggest worry.

The study also found, unsurprising, that nervousness was the main emotion learner drivers experience during their driving test. Just under half, at 47% said that is how they felt when they took their first took their test but 23%, said they felt confident.

Admiral found there was a difference in the percentage of people who felt confident during their driving test depending on the age of those surveyed. Only 18% of the under 25s said they felt confident, compared with 36% of those aged 35 to 44. The least confident were those aged 45 to 54. Only 15% of this group said they were confident during their test.

Admiral MultiCar spokesman, Justin Beddows, commenting on the research said: “It’s perfectly natural to feel nervous when you first take your driving test. What is surprising is the number who said the main emotion they felt was confidence. I certainly didn’t feel confident, and it’s a memory that’s stayed with me for the last 25 years!”

The study however found that once people pass their test the majority of new drivers cannot wait to hit the road by themselves and do so the same day. Some 55% said they went out on their own the day they passed their test however 7% said they waited a month while 2% said they did not go out on their own for at least a year.

What were you most worried about the first time you drove alone?

1st Driving in difficult weather conditions 30%
2nd Driving in the dark 29%
3rd Driving alone 23%
4th Breaking down and being unaccompanied 16%
5th Not knowing your way around 15%
5th Crashing 15%
7th Driving with passengers in the car 10%
8th Ending up in a destination you don’t know 7%
9th Not knowing how to put fuel in the car 5%
10th Not understanding road signs 4%

Beddows added: “Nothing quite prepares you for being on the road by yourself for the first time and it’s almost like you have to learn to drive again without the support of your instructor.

“Our own statistics show that people who have passed their test and move from a provisional licence are unfortunately, more likely to have an accident than a learner driver.”

So do motorists think they would pass their driving test if they had to re-sit it today? The vast majority are confident in their abilities, with more than four out of five drivers saying they would pass. Only 19% said they don’t think they would.

Again there was a difference in confidence between age groups with those aged 35 to 44 being most confident, only 15% of this age group said they didn’t think they would pass their test today. The least confident in their ability was those aged 45 to 54, 22% of this group doubted they would pass.

This confidence maybe doesn’t match reality however as only half of the motorists surveyed said they passed first time. For 31% it took two attempts. For nearly one in eight it took three goes while one in twenty took four or more tests before passing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *