According to a new survey from AAA, Americans are less likely than they used to be to perceive a serious threat from dangerous driving behaviors such as drunk, aggressive or drowsy driving.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety analyzed four years of public surveys it performed, and found the number of people who believe driving after drinking is a serious threat declined from 90% in 2009 to 69% in 2012.
Survey results during the previous four years show decreasing concern for other dangerous driving behaviors:
- The number of people who consider drowsy driving a very serious threat declined from 71% in 2009 to 46% in 2012.
- The number of people who believe that texting or emailing while driving is a very serious threat declined from 87% in 2009 to 81% in 2012. At the same time, the number of people who admit to texting while driving increased from 21% to 26% during the same period.
- The number of people who consider red light running to be completely unacceptable declined from 77% in 2009 to 70% in 2012. In fact, 38% admitted to running a red light within the previous month.
"Motorists may be growing more complacent about potential safety risks behind the wheel," said Peter Kissinger, president and CEO of the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. "A 'do as I say, not as I do' attitude remains common with many motorists consistently admitting to engaging in the same dangerous behaviors for which they would condemn other drivers."