Motorcyclists and Car Drivers: A Tough Relationship
It is no secret that the relationship between motorcyclists and car drivers is typically a negative one, with both sides having a disdain for the other which can be attributed to a number of factors. While this is not always the case and it comes down to the individual, it is interesting to look at why the relationship could be frosty and consider both sides.
The 2018 Devitt Biker Survey looked into this relationship and provided some interesting results. So, read on to take a deeper look at this complex relationship.
What Motorcyclists Think of Drivers
When asked which adjectives listed in the survey best-described car drivers, as many as 70% of motorcyclists listed distracted which suggests that safety is the primary reason why motorcyclists do not like car drivers. 61% also thought drivers are impatient while 49% ticked careless, again suggesting safety is a concern along with a perhaps lack of respect for other road users. Additionally, when asked about personal experiences, as many as 64% of respondents claimed that motorcyclists have a negative view of car drivers.
Car Drivers on Motorcyclists
Respondents were also asked which statement they agreed with in relation to how car drivers feel about motorcyclists and a comprehensive 80% said that “car drivers have a negative view of motorcyclists”. It appears that the main issues that car drivers have are that they see motorcyclists as reckless and quick to blame car drivers.
Why Motorcyclists Don’t Like Car Drivers
When asked how motorcyclists feel when riding in close proximity to a car, 48% stated that they occasionally felt concerned about safety while 42% often felt concerned. As many as 79% stated that they were especially vigilant to watch for distracted drivers not paying attention to the road and over half claimed that drivers were more likely to cut them off/perform dangerous manoeuvres on the road.
Who is Most Distracted
When asked to rank who is most likely to be distracted on the roads, vans were placed first just ahead of cars and then motorcyclists in third. It is obvious that motorcyclists will be the most focused on the roads, but the survey clearly shows that being distracted and endangering other road users is a huge concern for motorcyclists which is easy to understand when you consider that motorcyclists are a vulnerable group without the protection that car drivers have.
The negative relationship between motorcyclists and car drivers goes back a long way and will likely continue for the foreseeable future. It is inevitable that road users will complain about other road users, especially when using a different form of transport, but it is clear that safety and being responsible on the road is key and all road users need to maintain focus and show respect no matter how many wheels they have.