City drivers will go the extra mile to avoid ‘stressful’ country lanes

City drivers will go the extra mile to avoid ‘stressful’ country lanes

City drivers are willing to add half an hour to their journeys in an effort to avoid “stressful” country lanes, a survey has found.

Research by the RAC showed that more urban motorists find navigating narrow lanes a tense experience compared with rural drivers.

The research comes as millions of people are set to head to British beauty spots on “staycations” due to the confusion and changing restrictions surrounding travel abroad.

Earlier this week, it emerged that Boris Johnson will be holidaying in the UK for the second year in a row this summer after he, his wife and son visited Scotland last year.

A survey of 2,000 drivers by the RAC and car insurer Ageas found that urban drivers were willing to add 23 miles, or 30 minutes, to their journeys to avoid going down narrow country lanes.

This dropped to just 10 minutes and 14 miles for rural drivers, and 25 minutes and 16 miles for drivers overall.

Squeezing past other drivers a headache

More than three quarters, 76 per cent, of urban drivers said they found navigating narrow roads “stressful” compared to 58 per cent of all drivers.

The biggest causes of stress for drivers were the difficulty of squeezing past another vehicle, which was cited by 62 per cent of motorists, and the threat of colliding with another vehicle head on, cited by 61 per cent. 

Meanwhile, more than a third of drivers said they felt the default 60mph speed limit on country lanes should be brought down. 

Currently, the national speed limit applies on single carriageway lanes unless local councils specifically lower them.

The RAC said that “unprecedented” numbers of drivers were due to flood on to country roads this summer and urged motorists not to go too fast on national speed limit lanes.

Simon Williams, a spokesman for the RAC, said: “For any driver less confident with tackling rural lanes, the message has to be to plan a journey properly before setting out, and drive at the right speed according to the nature of the road, even if the official limit is 60mph.

“We’d also advise not becoming too reliant on a car’s satnav. While ducking off a main road to shave off a few minutes might seem like a good idea, if you’re then faced with having to carefully negotiate a tractor and queue of vehicles coming the other way, any advantage is soon lost.”

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