Dodgy WA drivers commonly seen speeding, failing to indicate, finds RAC survey

Dodgy drivers speeding and failing to indicate are the biggest worry for West Australians on our roads, according to a new RAC driver survey. 

The insurance organisation surveyed around 850,000 of its members in order to determine the most common rules drivers see broken on WA roads, and over one third of respondents said they regularly saw other motorists exceed the legal speed limit.

Over a third of members said failing to indicate was a big problem for drivers, while tailgating and mobile phone use were recognised as the reason for the majority of rear-end crashes.

RAC corporate affairs general manager Will Golsby said the results were "alarming".

"Road rules and laws are there for a reason, so it is worrying that so many drivers are openly breaking them – especially when WA has the worst road fatality rate of any state in Australia," he said.

"Last year, 195 Western Australians were killed on our roads, with many more seriously injured. Speed continues to be the leading cause of crashes, so it is both unacceptable and heartbreaking that more than a third of survey respondents regularly see drivers breaking speed limits.

"A further quarter of respondents said they see people tailgating and using their mobile phone behind the wheel – two dangerous habits which have been shown as being the main contributors to rear-end crashes."

Surprisingly, only 19 per cent of survey respondents said they had witnessed incorrect merging on WA roads, and only nine per cent reported drivers who failed to give way.

"RAC is urging drivers to obey the road rules. They are in place to keep you safe. Our state's road fatality and serious injury rate is unacceptable, and WA drivers need to take more responsibility for their actions," Mr Golsby said.

"You're in control of what you do behind the wheel, but you're not in control of the consequences of your decision."

According to the latest Road Safety Commission statistics, there have been 90 deaths on WA roads so far this year.

Last year 27 fatalities were due to fatigue-related crashes, 24 were due to not wearing a seatbelt and 62 were due to alcohol.

Speed was the most common cause of WA car accidents, with 65 fatalities recorded in 2016.

The top 10 dodgy driver traits seen on WA roads: 

  • speeding (37 per cent)
  • failure to indicate (33 per cent)
  • tailgating (27 per cent)
  • using a mobile phone (25 per cent)
  • running red or amber lights (21 per cent)
  • incorrect use of roundabouts (20 per cent)
  • incorrectly merging (19 per cent)
  • failure to keep left (10 per cent)
  • changing lanes over a solid continuous lane marking (9 per cent)
  • failure to give way (9 per cent)