Company car drivers admit to regularly speeding on motorways

Company car drivers admit to regularly speeding on motorways
Drivers of company cars have been urged to consider the risks of speeding after a poll by RAC Business found that the majority admit to breaking the limit on motorways.

According to the research from RAC Business, the number of company car drivers who own up to speeding on motorways has risen by 7% on last year to hit 88%.

And it appears that many of these motorists are regularly breaking the limit, as nearly half – 48% – of participants confessed to speeding on most motorway journeys.

READ MORE: Police stops for motorists using mobile phones fall by nearly 50% despite increase in offenders

This is in contrast to the 26% of private motorists who admit to habitually going over the speed limit on the same stretches of road.

In the findings, which were published as part of the RAC’s Report on Motoring 2016, 51% of company car drivers said their typical speed on the motorway was 80mph.

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A small minority of the country’s business fleet surveyed – 7% – owned up to driving even more quickly, at 90mph.

This is despite the fact that the time savings of speeding are thought to be minimal, with only around six seconds a mile saved when going at 80mph as opposed to 70mph, according to the RAC.

Accelerating above the speed limit also has a big effect on fuel efficiency, the Government has said.

Driving at 80mph can use 25% more fuel than driving at 70mph, which can in turn mean businesses having to pay out more money on petrol or diesel.

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According the RAC, businesses should seek to encourage safer driving among their employees.

“Knowingly breaking the speed limit is a dangerous approach to driving, whether you think you can justify it or not, and the risks associated with speeding far outweigh the time saved,” said Jenny Powley, from RAC Business.

“A key way in which companies can respond to this growing problem is to make the most of telematics technology to identify high risk drivers and journeys and use the data to inform their staff training.”

Further findings uncovered by the poll include the fact that nearly a third – 31%– of company car drivers believe the current motorway speed limit is inappropriate.

Nearly three-quarters of those polled – 71% – said the limit should be increased to 80mph.

The RAC’s Report on Motoring has already had a dramatic impact on driving law and policy.

It revealed that 31% of drivers today admit to using their phone behind the wheel – up from 8% in 2014.

As a result, the Government is to introduce harsher penalties for those caught using a handheld phone behind the wheel.

The minimum fine will increase from £100 to £200, while the number of penalty points will go up from three to six.

Copyright Press Association 2016. Motoring News articles do not reflect the RAC's views unless clearly stated.