What sort of driver are you?

15 April 2015

We probably mostly think we are pretty good – it’s others who are the problem potentially? Our first, scoping, piece of work among road users on England’s Strategic Road Network showed that the commuter, business, leisure categories we use to report public transport work might need to be refined.

Drivers felt that they were either:

  • Invincibles include most HGV/professional/coach drivers and some business and leisure drivers. They tended to see other drivers as less able than themselves, and had little respect for ‘Sunday’ drivers. They thought other drivers needed more education to drive safely.
  • Nostalgics were mostly leisure drivers, typically older drivers who remembered when driving on motorways was easier and less busy. They were anxious about busy motorway driving and preferred using A roads.
  • Cavalier drivers tended not to have held their licence for long and/or had limited motorway experience. They underestimated risks, and were over-confident in their own driving skills.
  • Reluctants tended to find driving on the SRN to be stressful and behaved very cautiously in difficult driving situations. Occasionally this cautious behaviour was considered to be dangerous by other drivers.

We consider that this approach, though simple, can be helpful in understanding attitudes at the extremes of using the SRN. It is important to understand this as we go ahead – if we are going to measure satisfaction among road users we need to really comprehend how road users feel about the experience first.

See the full report at: Road user needs and experiences – summary report


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