How responsible are Hungarian drivers?

Automotive

Drunk driving, sudden braking, and going through the red light are the three main offenses that Hungarian drivers consider to be the most dangerous on the road, according to a representative survey of Magyar Suzuki Corporation and Ipsos.

Some 10% of accidents occurred due to driver error on account of alcohol dependence in 2020. Most Hungarians (97%) take alcohol-related regulations seriously and consider drunk driving a serious offense.

No statistics are kept on accidents caused by sudden braking and running a red light but may be punished by up to three years' imprisonment for endangering traffic safety.

Some 95% of the participants in the research consider it very dangerous to drive a vehicle in poor condition. Hungarians probably pay attention to this as well, because the number of road traffic accidents including personal injuries due to the technical failure of cars was less than 1% in Hungary in 2020.

“The automotive industry has also introduced a number of developments in recent years to increase the safety of cars and their passengers. Many of the driving support systems available today including combined sensor emergency brake assist, lane-keeping warning, lane departure warning, dead space monitoring, adaptive cruise control are all the innovations of recent years. At Suzuki, we pay special attention to safety, yet the best seat belt is responsible driving behavior," said Zsuzsanna Bonnár-Csonka, head of corporate communications at Magyar Suzuki Corporation.

About 92% of Hungarians consider the failure to use the direction indicator to be very accident-prone. Still, 75% of road traffic accidents occurred in Hungary in 2020 due to speeding, violation of priority, or turning rules.

Smoking and eating while driving (64%), crossing outside the crosswalk (68%), using the stop lane (69%), not keeping to the right (75%), or listening to loud music (75%) are considered the least dangerous.

The human factor is the most influential one

However, there are times when we are more pliant in driving. Hungarians clearly consider it dangerous (83%), yet many people (70%) drive in an inappropriate mental state. This means sitting behind the wheel tired, nervous, or getting disturbed by passengers traveling with us while driving.

Moreover, based on the small group interviews included in the representative survey of Magyar Suzuki, more people say that individuals may deviate from the rules in certain cases, if one takes into account one’s own abilities, experience, car characteristics, and technical features. Some say that with a better car, for example, one can risk a more reckless overtaking because the vehicle allows it.

The survey also shows that 75% of Hungarians consider it essential to comply with the Traffic Code, 73% of them believe that many accidents are caused by ignoring rules. The majority believes that compliance is important for safe driving, but in their view, however, this is not followed by thoughtful, responsible behavior in practice.

European drivers also tend to treat the Traffic Code loosely

A European study on a similar topic also confirms that for some, the Traffic Code is only a recommendation. Some 52% of European drivers break traffic rules because they do not always feel them coherent or appropriate for the situation. About 29% think that some rules are only there so that fines can be issued. Some 22% feel so vigilant that they do not have to keep certain rules.

Moreover, 10% say everyone has their own freedom to decide whether to comply with the Traffic Code or not. 9% of them think that due to their own experience and routine, they should not consider the guidelines while driving while 7% of them think on what will be will be basis. 4% consider they don't have to stick to the rules because their vehicle is safer than average.

“As a car manufacturer, safety comes first for us. However, not even the most shatterproof bodywork can make up for compliance with road rules. A responsible attitude is important, not only on the road, but also in our daily lives. At Magyar Suzuki, therefore, we seek and support activities aimed at developing responsible behavior. With this research, we wanted to draw attention to the need to change social thinking about security as a kind of starting step. At the same time, assess where we are starting from. We hope to see a spectacular improvement in the numbers when we research the subject again later," the communication leader shared her thoughts on the topic of research.

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