Michelin Spring Driving Survey: Ipsos-Reid

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May 2, 2006 Toronto, ON – The 2006 Spring Driving survey conducted by Ipsos Reid for Michelin Tires reveals that Canadian drivers may not be as courteous as they think they are. While two in three (66%) drivers say they become more relaxed behind the wheel and are more courteous to fellow motorists when the weather gets warmer in the Spring, only 10% of drivers say they’ve observed such behaviour in fellow motorists during Spring!

Similarly, four in ten drivers say other drivers are less concerned with hazards on the road and drive more aggressively (42%) or are more likely to speed on Spring roads (38%); but just 23% and 31% (respectively) of motorists admit to such behaviour.

* Young adult drivers 18-34 years of age are particularly likely to say they drive more aggressively (33%) and speed (48%) in the Spring.

Canadian drivers encounter many hazards on the road in the Spring, but it’s potholes and bumpy roads (59%) that top the list, likely an effect of Spring thaw. Other Spring driving hazards include slick, slippery roads (27%), sunshine and glare (17%), other drivers (17%), and construction/detours (15%).

* Potholes and bumpy roads are more of a problem in the Prairies and East, likely a result of winter weather conditions.

Finally, the survey also finds that one-third (33%) of spouses or partners are guilty of backseat driving and one-quarter (26%) of drivers themselves are self-appointed backseat drivers! Other backseat drivers include parents (11%), friends (7%), and children (7%).

* Men are more likely to say their spouse/partner is a backseat driver (41% vs. 24% of women) and women are more likely to say they’re the backseat driver (35% vs. 18% of men)!

These are the findings of an Ipsos Reid/Michelin poll conducted from February 28 to March 2, 2006. For the survey, a representative randomly selected sample of 892 Canadians 18+ with a valid driver’s license was interviewed by telephone. With a sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to within approx. 3.3 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the entire adult Canadian driver population been polled. The margin of error will be larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were weighted to ensure the sample’s regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data.

Ipsos Reid

Ipsos Reid is Canada’s market intelligence leader, the country’s leading provider of public opinion research, and research partner for loyalty and forecasting and modelling insights. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos Reid employs more than 300 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in the country, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and online panels. Ipsos Reid’s marketing research and public affairs practices offer the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada, all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, Ipsos Reid offers syndicated information or custom solutions across key sectors of the Canadian economy, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, automotive, retail, and technology & telecommunications. Ipsos Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group. To learn more, please visit www.ipsos.ca.