Research by Carfinance247 shows that drivers spend most time steering with one hand
James Corden may have had his knuckles wrapped by bosses for his no-hands driving antics in the Late Late Show’s Carpool Karaoke segment, but it seems he’s not alone.
A new survey from Carfinance247 has found that in a thirty minute journey, the majority of the nation spends less than 15 minutes with both hands on the steering wheel.
• During a 30 minute journey, British drivers spend less than half the time with both hands on wheel
• More than 90 per cent of drivers take both hands off the wheel at least once in 30 minutes
• A fifth of UK drivers drive in the quarter to three position, while 60 per cent of one handers drive at the 12 o’ clock position and 13 per cent at six o’ clock
• 85% of respondents don't think they’d pass the driving test now
• Other bad habits driving the nation mad
Men are the worst offenders with 64% saying they use a double handed grip for less than 15 minutes and 25% less than five minutes in a half hour journey.
In contrast, 56% of women stated they spend under a quarter of an hour driving two-handed and 10% less than five minutes.
And a mere 6% of all drivers surveyed said that they use both hands to steer at all times, unless undertaking necessary maneuvers such as changing gear or indicating.
Experts advise that drivers should grip the wheel on either side, feeding the wheel through the hands with a push-pull or pull-push motion (depending on which way the vehicle is turning) in order to keep optimum control of the car.
The study also showed that those driving one-handed are also more likely to be partaking in another distracting activity – which can lead to a charge of not being in proper control of the vehicle.
The top reasons for one-handed steering include:
1. Laziness/comfort (hand on gear stick / arm on the door)
3. Searching for something
4. Attending to children
5. Using a mobile phone to make a call
8. Using a sat nav
9. Checking appearance
10. Applying make up
11. Sorting radio / music
12. Stroking a pet
Some of the more unusual reasons for distracted driving included: cleaning the dashboard, reading, nose-picking, watching a film, doing work, eating cornflakes, making obscene hand gestures at drivers or pedestrians and kissing.
Naughty Brits also know they’re in the wrong with their one-handed driving habits. When asked about their preferred driving position and what they perceived to be correct:
• Just 11% of respondents said they drive with hands in the ten-to-two position despite 45% believing this to be the correct way to steer
• 19% drive with hands at three and nine
• 21%opt for a lower position on the wheel – somewhere near five and seven on the clock
• 46% said they drive one-handed most of the time, with 67% admitting they’re unsure if this is a correct/lawful way to drive. Of these, 60% drive with their hand at 12 o’clock and 13% with their hand at 6 o’clock.
• 29% of drivers were unsure of the correct hand position on the wheel
It’s perhaps no surprise that the exact placing of our hands is a source of confusion. It’s a disputed subject, but some experts believe that because of the force and trajectory of modern day air bags, drivers should position their hands slightly lower in order to avoid injury – at the 9 and 3 o’clock position – yet many driving schools still teach that 10 and 2 is correct.
Other findings from the survey showed that just 16% of respondents said they still turn the wheel by feeding it through their hands as advised by driving experts.
A whopping 85% of respondents didn’t believe they’d pass their driving test now if they had to re-sit.
Amy Smith from Carfinance247 says: “The survey shows that British drivers are taking a hands off approach to making sure they’re fully in control of a vehicle and multi-tasking seems to be a major culprit. Driving one-handed for whatever reason can be dangerous and in some cases can lead to criminal charges, so we’d advise everyone to keep their hands on the wheel and their eyes on the road."