62% of drivers say they felt scared or nervous being on the roads in poor wintry weather, according to a new survey.
The road safety training organisation TTC reveals that nearly two-thirds of motorists who took part in the survey admitted to feeling intimidated driving on icy roads. This figure fell slightly to 60% for snow and 54% in stormy weather. Shortened days left 56% of drivers struggling with driving in the dark, with the glare of oncoming headlights a typical problem. 69% of motorists who wore glasses found driving in the dark intimidating, while 45% did not.
Other things that made drivers nervous were being aware of cyclists and pedestrians in the dark.
Drawing on the findings of the survey, TTC have asked employers in the fleet industry to be more mindful of the difficulties that even experienced drivers may face at this time of year.
“Our latest research confirms that the majority of drivers lack confidence in adapting to winter conditions”, said Jim Kirkwood, CEO of TTC. “If their job involves driving for work, employees can feel obliged to make a journey. But it shouldn’t be left to them to judge if a journey is necessary if weather conditions are severe.”
“Fleet and business travel managers should give employees clear advice on what is deemed a ‘necessary journey’ to help avoid driving in dangerous conditions. Along with appropriate training to give drivers the skills to cope with challenging weather while on the road, fleet managers can also fulfil their duty of care obligations.”
“Drivers need to know exactly what their employer expects of them. For example, issuing timely advice if snow is forecast, will give employees the direction to embrace virtual working or rearrange important site visits and meetings.”
TTC also encouraged fleet managers to remind their drivers of some simple techniques for winter driving, like turning down the interior lights inside a vehicle and the importance of regular breaks to rest tired eyes.