Idiotic, dangerous driving seems more prevalent in B.C. than anywhere else in Canada, according to a new poll.
The national survey of drivers by Angus Reid Public Opinion found 95 per cent of B.C. drivers spotted others talking on cellphones in the past month, more than in any other region and well above the national average of 90 per cent.
B.C. respondents also reported above-average rates of drivers speeding (93 per cent), tailgating (83 per cent), turning without signalling (85 per cent), changing lanes without warning (83 per cent) and running red lights (63 per cent).
Seventy-one per cent had spotted a driver multitasking – such as reading, checking text messages or applying make-up – compared to 65 per cent across Canada.
And 56 per cent here had seen drivers invade a crosswalk with pedestrians in it, far above the 33 per cent national rate.
“There’s a lot of bad behaviour we’re seeing on the streets,” said Angus Reid vice-president Mario Canseco, who is based in Vancouver and reports similar observations himself.
He said the apparent rate of illegal cellphone use is shocking considering B.C. has outlawed the practice for more than two years.
“It’s just bizarre that we keep seeing people using their cellphones,” he said.
But Canseco noted 81 per cent of B.C. respondents said only a few of the drivers in their city were bad drivers, while 19 per cent said most to all others on the road were bad.
He said that result – better than the national average – suggests motorists here on the whole are fairly safe but a few particularly reckless drivers are highly visible.
The only area where B.C. scored better than the national average was in littering, which only 43 per cent of respondents here witnessed recently compared to 46 per cent nation-wide.
Other findings of the poll found 43 per cent of B.C. motorists said they’ve honked their horn at a bad driver, 27 per cent swore, 18 per cent waved their fist, arm or hands, 16 per cent made an obscene gesture and nine per cent called police.