A new survey commissioned by Auto Trader suggests that all is not well on our roads, with drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, runners and wheelchair users all feeling threatened.
Half of all road users (53%) have been or felt intimidated when they’re out and about, with people admitting they’ve faced aggression from other road users (47%) and have been shouted at (45%), sworn at or insulted (41%) and tailgated (67%).
Some 18% have been threatened physically and a staggering one in 10 has actually come to blows.
Auto Trader – the UK’s largest marketplace for new and used cars – has launched the #SwearToChange campaign, supported by Double Olympic Gold medal winning cyclist and jockey Victoria Pendleton and British Paralympian athlete Lauren Steadman.
Designed to spark a constructive debate on road equality, #SwearToChange is giving away 20,000 items of free reflective outdoor jackets, back pack covers and dog leads to people who want to be more visible in the dark, winter months.
In return, Auto Trader wants recipients to acknowledge and encourage a change in old attitudes on UK roads in a bid to improve road equality.
“These results show that we can all help make Britain’s roads a more pleasant place to be,” said Victoria.
“As someone that cycles, horse rides, drives and walks I know things could be better.
“Instead of swearing at each other, let’s swear to change the way we treat our fellow road users.
“We all have an equal right to be on the road, so let’s be more compassionate and considerate to others and see what change we can drive.”
Lauren added: “I am someone who spends a lot of time running, cycling and driving on UK roads, so it’s alarming to see the statistics on aggression, physical violence and abuse.
“I think it shows that, collectively, we can all contribute to improving attitudes and consideration on the roads, creating a safer environment for everyone.
“I’m backing Auto Trader’s #SwearToChange campaign as it’s sparking a constructive debate on the changes all road users would like to see on UK roads.
“With changes in infrastructure and more people taking up cycling and running, there’s no better time to challenge these attitudes and #SwearToChange.”