New research carried out by the AA has found that 15% of drivers admit to having experienced episodes where they can’t experience the last few moments, or longer, in their journeys quite often or very often. Memory blanks can be due to feeling like you know where you are, perhaps as you approach home and the AA has stated how important it is to consistently focus on the road, regardless of where you are.
The research found that younger people experience more memory blanks than older and drivers in Yorkshire, Wales and Humberside ranked highest in terms of percentage admitting they experienced memory blanks. Female drivers too are more likely to admit to memory blanks than male drivers and 31% of all men questioned were adamant they never forget.
The risks of going into autopilot are very real as anything which takes your full focus away from the road is a concern. The study was carried out by AA-Populus for the AA.
Speaking on behalf of the AA their president Edmund King said: ““Our AA-Populus study shows that one in seven drivers often go into autopilot whilst driving. There may be many reasons for this, including being distracted by phone or passenger conversations, being engrossed in music or radio discussions or possibly just day dreaming.
“Until the advent of driverless cars we would prefer drivers to be more alert behind the wheel. Motoring memory blanks may be an indication that the driver is not concentrating on the road ahead.”
Concentration and Road Traffic Accidents
The AA believes that any lack of concentration can become a contributory cause in a road traffic accident. Government figures have found that the most common factor in accidents, as identified by the police, was the failure to look property, found in 44% of all accidents in 2014. 32% of all fatal accidents involved a loss of control according to the police too and these two factors are often found together as a driver doesn’t look and also doesn’t judge their speed properly so isn’t fully in control.
Having a good awareness for your surroundings, wherever you are driving, is essential for remaining safe and also for ensuring, should the worst occur and an accident happen, you are able to accurately direct police and others who need to attend.
When an accident occurs the excuse or reason of ‘not looking’ is not acceptable and it is not going to result in anybody involved in the incident viewing the at fault driver in a positive light. If an accident should occur and people are injured, to not have been looking is evidence of negligent driving and could lead to a personal injury compensation claim being made against you. Concentrating after a busy day or on a long journey can be hard but it is absolutely essential for the safety of yourself and other road users.