Driving for work increases risk of accidents

Millions of Britons who regularly drive for their work are potentially lethal ‘crash magnets’, whose risky behaviour at the wheel makes them much more likely than other road users to cause accidents, research reveals.

Employees who spend long hours driving to meet colleagues or clients cause some 1,000 deaths a year, almost a third of the UK’s annual toll of 3,221 road deaths. They break speed limits, get fined, pick up penalty points and crash more often than other drivers.

The findings emerged from a survey of a range of workers in Strathclyde, including drivers, sales staff, engineers, managers and directors.

It was led by Steve Stradling, professor of transport psychology in the Transport Research Institute at Edinburgh’s Napier University.

The study will be published this week at an international conference on driver behaviour and training. Stradling blamed deadlines, work-related stress, fatigue, use of mobile phones at the wheel and a lack of driver training for staff.

Sixty-two per cent of those surveyed, from 23 companies in central Scotland, admitted they were often under time pressures while driving.

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