Woman drivers get less distracted than men says study

we love 20/11/2017

New research has reignited the age-old debate of whether men or women make for better drivers.

While stereotypes of women being bad drivers have provided the punch-line to many tired jokes over the years, surveys conducted by Norway's Institute of Transport Economics suggest they're actually more competent behind the wheel than men. 

Looking at the frequency and type of distractions participants experienced during driving, the study concluded that young men, regular drivers, and extroverted or neurotic people were more likely to suffer.

Conversely, older women were much better at controlling their distractions and paying attention to the road ahead. 

Alongside gender and age, the Norwegian scientists also considered traits such as personality to determine driver distraction. 

Researcher Ole Johansson says that while "there are many campaigns to improve safety in traffic; little research has looked at distractions".

"Tailored interventions to reduce driver distraction could focus on at-risk groups, such as young males with bad attitudes to distracted driving and a low belief that they can control their distraction," said Mr Johansson.

The study was conducted via two sample groups: the first, an 1100-strong cohort of high school students - 208 of which were licensed - and the second, 414 people who were taken from the general population.

It was revealed that while overall rates of distraction were low, fiddling with the radio was the most common cause.

The findings were published in journal Frontiers in Psychology.