Research undertaken by security company Allianz shows that the majority of UK drivers believe that it is OK to speed, although most also support having limits and a quarter even say that new cars should be built with speed limiters installed. When it comes to the reasons for speeding, there was a range of excuses supplied, but the most common were that the allure of an open road was too great, that their speed just crept up, or that they were running late.
Speeding is a problem on the roads, and is known to cause accidents, but there are many drivers that believe speed limits should be increased rather than decreased. Some groups point to the fact that the speed limits which are currently in force on UK roads were established in the days when cars were not as safe, and could not reliably drive at high speeds.
Modern cars, they argue, are better equipped to be able to drive at high speeds and over long distances, while also offering improved braking and stopping distances, while road surfaces have also improved, and they believe that this combination means that the current speed limits should be increased. Although there has been talk of an increase in motorway speed limits, nothing has been introduced as yet.
The lack of a change in speed limits, however, has not stopped many drivers from increasing their own speeds when on the roads. The research conducted by Allianz shows that 74% of respondents said that they thought it was acceptable to drive at 5mph above the speed limit and 20% said that it was similarly OK to drive 10mph quicker than the limit on any roads, including those that are designated 20mph because of schools and other areas where there is a build-up of vulnerable pedestrians.
Drivers also gave their own reasons for driving over the speed limit, and although there were a wide range of different responses, the most common ones were that the roads were clear, that they were running late, or that their speed simply crept up without them noticing.