Motorways cause motorists confusion ahead of driving test changes

02 November 2017

• 60% of UK motorists think people drive too fast
• 32% don’t know what the national speed limit is
• 31% think you must be aged 18 to drive on the motorway

A new study released today from Co-op Insurance reveals a need for greater education on motorways for new drivers, as a third (32%) of motorists say they’ve no idea what the speed limit on motorways is.

Despite this lack of knowledge, two thirds (60%) of motorists believe that people drive too fast on motorways.

Furthermore, a third (31%) of motorists think you can only drive on the motorway if aged 18 or over and a further 4% think drivers need to be aged 21.

Highlighting a lack of knowledge in relation to the Highway Code more generally, two thirds (63%) of motorists incorrectly think that HGVs and motorists pulling trailers can use the right hand lane which is against the law.

Over a tenth (13%) of drivers don’t know that it’s illegal to use the hard shoulder in a non-emergency.

Furthermore, when tested, two fifths (41%) of motorists cannot identify what motorways signs signify, further highlighting the importance of motorway education.

Nick Ansley, Head of Motor at Co-op Insurance commented: “It’s worrying that a third of our drivers don’t know what speed they should be driving on UK motorways and that there is confusion among so many drivers about what age you need to be in order to drive on a motorway.

“Our study highlights further why it’s so important that learners are educated when learning to drive on motorways to ensure that they are other motorists are safe on motorways.”

Mike Bristow, spokesperson for Brake, the road safety charity said: “Motorway driving can often be a daunting task, especially for those who have recently passed their test.

“It’s important that people who chose to drive on motorways feel confident and able to do so safely. The introduction of motorway driving lessons is a welcome step, but these statistics clearly highlight that more can be done to educate drivers and keep them safe on our motorways.”


Notes to Editor

Research was conducted on behalf of Co-op Insurance by Atomik Research among 1000 UK drivers in September 2017

Media Contacts:

Emily Penkett
Press and Media Relations Manager
Mobile: 07738621201

Rosie Brierley
Press Officer
Mobile: 07834446709

Follow us: @coopukpress

About Co-op Insurance

Co-op Insurance is a UK-based general insurer that operates principally within the personal lines segments of the motor and home insurance markets. The Co-op Insurance underwrites the majority of business written, supplemented with some small lines of business where The Co-op Insurance acts as a distributor or has a 100% reinsurance arrangement in place.

With more than 1.18m customers, The Co-op Insurance is committed to ‘Doing the Right Thing’ and always strives to treat customers and members fairly. The Co-op Insurance pioneered the way in lowering the insurance premiums of young drivers as the first major insurer to launch a pay how you drive telematics insurance product for young drivers in 2011. Since launching the scheme, The Co-op Insurance has saved its young drivers more than £7.2 million in their first year of driving.