Kids 'driving parents to distraction'

2 Jul 2019

Kids 'driving parents to distraction'

Many parents are struggling to concentrate while driving because of their children's behaviour in the car, a new poll has suggested.

Research carried out by Nissan found 63 per cent of mums and dads admitted to struggling to fully focus on the road when their little ones start misbehaving, with 65 per cent saying they sometimes have to put up with tantrums and 58 per cent reporting backseat battles between siblings.

As a result, parents said they regularly feel stressed and anxious when they have to ferry their kids around - and some even change their driving habits as a result.

Indeed, 15 per cent reported completely avoiding motorways or other busy roads because they can't handle the stress.

Worryingly, the research also revealed 29 per cent of parents said they know they are less safe behind the wheel when their children behave badly in the car, with some admitting to dangerous actions such as taking their eyes off the road, running red lights, forgetting to indicate and even swerving into other lanes of traffic.

To help them with avoiding distractions, 34 per cent of the poll's respondents said they intend to look for driving assistance systems such as lane departure warnings and automatic braking when seeking new car deals.

Nissan Europe spokesperson Jean-Philippe Roux commented: "Driving safely and staying focused should always be the driver's main priority, and there's no substitute for this. However, knowing your car is fitted with technology that can predict and prevent potentially dangerous situations can help create an overall feeling of calm at the wheel. This, in turn helps drivers keep their focus firmly on the road ahead."

Parents spend an average of two hours and 54 minutes a week in the car with their children, or the equivalent of more than six days a year.

The news comes after Swinton found last year that a third of Britons regularly get stressed behind the wheel, although the biggest cause for more than half of them was other motorists.