Parents driving teens’ bad driving behaviour

Parents' bad driving behaviours are rubbing off on their teens, new research shows.

Young drivers in Queensland are copying their parents’ bad driving behaviours, new research shows.

A survey by the state’s peak motoring body has revealed young people are driving tired, speeding and using mobile phones behind the wheel after seeing their parents commit the on-road sins.

Shockingly, some also admitted to drinking before driving and driving over the blood alcohol limit after witnessing their parents do the same.

The survey results has prompted the RACQ to plead with mums and dads to consider the example they are setting for their teenage children behind the wheel.

Spokeswoman Clare Hunter said more than half of those who responded to the Young Drivers Survey had driven tired or over the speed limit after seeing their parents do the same.

“When parents break the rules and drive unsafely it clearly makes young drivers think they can get away with the same behaviour,” Ms Hunter said.

“These are the people young drivers look up to which is why it’s disappointing to see so many parents are setting these bad examples.”

The survey also found a quarter of young drivers who witnessed a parent using a hand-held mobile phone while driving had committed the same offence.

“Like speeding and fatigue, distraction’s one of the biggest killers on our roads, and it’s disturbing novice drivers are copying these dangerous behaviours,” Ms Hunter said.

“If you’re distracted behind the wheel you’re wielding a ton of metal blind, and that’s not only putting yourself in danger, but everyone else on the road.”

Ms Hunter urged parents to consider the example they were setting when behind the wheel.

“Drive how you want your kids to drive and make sure you refresh yourself on the road rules,” she said.

She also reminded parents that the Federal Government’s Keys2Drive program also gives young drivers and their parents one free driving lesson.


Proportion of young drivers who copied their parents’ bad driving behaviours
Driving tired: 53.5%
Speeding: 52.7%
Use a phone while stopped at lights: 36.1%
Drive using a hand-held mobile phone: 24.5%
Check social media while driving: 17.6%
Run a red light: 15.1%
Drive without a seatbelt: 13.5%
Drink some alcohol before driving: 11.4%
Drive while over the alcohol limit: 4.4%