The research reveals many motorists in 21st century Britain think there is little risk of being caught breaking the law at the wheel for anything other than speeding or running a red light: offences typically enforced via cameras.
Two in five drivers (40%) believe anyone committing common offences such as texting at the wheel of either a moving or stationary vehicle, aggressive driving, tailgating, middle lane hogging or undertaking on the motorway would more than likely get away with it.
And half of motorists (51%) think it is unlikely drivers will ever get picked up for texting while stopped in traffic. In fact, only 18% believe motorists are likely to be taken to task with the rest (22%) uncertain as to whether they will or they won’t.
Only three in 10 motorists (29%) think drivers will get into trouble for texting on the move while 42% think it is unlikely (31% were not sure or did not have an opinion).
For the new offences of tailgating and middle lane hogging only a quarter (24%) and one in five (22%) respectively think motorists are likely to be pulled up by a traffic police officer.
In terms of aggressive driving, 40% of motorists felt drivers would be unlikely to be caught (30% likely) and for undertaking on the motorway the figures were 49% unlikely and only 20% likely.
The only offences that motorists truly believe are dealt with effectively are the ones that are enforced via cameras such as speeding and traffic light violations which nearly half (45% speeding and 46% running a red light) think drivers are likely to get caught for.
RAC technical director David Bizley said: ‘Our research shows that millions of law-abiding motorists are frustrated with the reduction of traffic police and believe that the chances of drivers being pulled up for breaking the law are now minimal. Motorists are tired of constantly seeing other drivers breaking the law and getting away with it so it is hardly surprising that they want to see a greater police presence on our roads to enforce motoring legislation more effectively, which would also act as a genuine deterrent. ’
‘The RAC Report on Motoring 2014 is available to download from www.rac.co.uk/reportonmotoring.