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Study: University Students More Likely to Drive Drunk, Distracted

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Ford Driving Skills for Life

According to the results of a new survey commissioned by the Ford Motor Company, students in Europe are considerably more likely to exhibit risky behaviors behind the wheel than drivers who stopped did not pursue higher education after high school.

A survey of 6,500 people from across France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the United Kingdom conducted by Lightspeed GMI found that 43% of drivers currently enrolled at university admitted to texting and driving, 38% admitted to perusing apps, 36% admitted to taking phone calls, 60% admitted to driving at speeds exceeding the speed limit, and 13% admitted to drinking and driving.

The frequency of these behaviors were surprisingly lower among younger drivers who left school after the age of 18. 45% of these respondents admitted to speeding, 9% admitted to drinking and driving, and 41% admitted to using their phone in some form or fashion while driving.

Consistent with these findings was the frequency with which drivers in university admitted to having been involved in an accident (30%) compared to that of non-university-educated drivers (25%).

Further, it was found that 48% of drivers in university would operate a vehicle with too many occupants, 75% would be willing to drive on no sleep whatsoever, and 28% would willingly ride in a vehicle driven by an intoxicated driver.

“Getting to university is an incredible achievement and it is also where many of us make some of our strongest friendships. But we want to make sure these are lifelong friendships and help to ensure that these young people can one day look back with pride on a successful graduation,” said Jim Graham, manager, Ford DSFL. “It is crucial students, and all young people, understand the terrible consequences, both for themselves and for others, that taking risks behind the wheel can lead to.”