If Santa based the naughty or nice list on driving habits, a troubling number of U.S. drivers would get nothing but coal in their stockings.
According to a survey of 1,000 drivers by State Farm and KRC Research, 44 percent of drivers say they have engaged in aggressive driving in the past three months, and almost a third say they're more likely to drive aggressively during the holidays.
Aggressive driving includes speeding or driving too fast for conditions, improper lane changing or passing, and tailgating. Running traffic signals is one of the most common causes of car crashes in cities, and speeding or driving too fast for conditions cause about one-third of all fatal U.S. car crashes.
The survey's other findings include:
- Sixty-four percent of drivers were subjected to aggressive maneuvers by other drivers at least six times in the last three months.
- Fifty-four percent of drivers say men are more likely to drive aggressively than women, and about 10 percent say women are more likely. The remainder say men and women are equally likely to be aggressive drivers.
- Traffic jams, running late and road closures or construction are the most likely situations to prompt aggressive driving.
"These findings reinforce how important it is to keep safety top of mind when driving every day, but especially during heavy travel times like the winter holidays," Chris Mullen, State Farm's director of technology research, said in a press statement. "Both negative and positive emotions can affect the way drivers behave and it's vital to be aware of your state of mind and continually refocus your attention on the road and practicing safe driving behaviors."
State Farm encourages drivers to be nicer during the holiday season and to give themselves extra time to account for bad weather, heavy traffic or parking lot congestion.