Most Canadians say using a cell phone while driving is wrong
(majority do it anyway), finds RBC Insurance survey
MISSISSAUGA, ON, October 23, 2008 — An RBC
Insurance/Ipsos Reid survey suggests that while the nine-in-ten
Canadians drivers (86 per cent) do not approve of using a
cell phone when driving, almost all drivers (95 per cent)
report having seen other people talking on cell phones while
on the road. Despite knowing the risks of using a cell phone
while driving, many Canadians succumb to temptation: 52 per
cent of drivers who have cell phones admit to using them while
behind the wheel.
Canadians are also critical about e-mail and texting while
driving, with an overwhelming number of drivers (97per cent)
saying it is wrong to do either while driving. However, almost
half (47 per cent) have seen people checking e-mail or text
messages while driving.
"Mobile technologies have dramatically increased our
ability to multi-task at home and work and now unfortunately
in our cars," said François Boulanger, president
and CEO, RBC General Insurance Company. "And it's happening
despite clear evidence that most motor vehicle accidents are
caused by driver error. Anything that takes away from one's
focus on safe driving should be avoided."
As debates continue across the country over the issue of
driver distraction and cell phone use while driving, industry
associations like the Insurance Bureau of Canada (IBC) have
started national campaigns to alert Canadians to the dangers
of distracted driving.
"Most Canadians acknowledge that driver distraction
is a problem," said Mary Lou O'Reilly, VP, Public Affairs
and Marketing for IBC. "Most of us think it's the other
guy's problem. We need to change that attitude if we want
our roads to be safe."
The survey also found 73 per cent of Canadians have witnessed
other drivers eating a meal while driving and 58 per cent
of Canadians have personally seen other drivers putting on
make-up while driving. Of those surveyed, 19 per cent acknowledged
they continued driving even when extremely tired.
These are the findings of an RBC Insurance/Ipsos Reid survey
conducted between March 27 and April 10, 2008. The poll was
based on a randomly selected sample of 2,251 adult Canadians,
who were interviewed by telephone. With a sample of this size,
the results are considered accurate to within ±2.19
percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would
have been had the entire adult Canadian population been polled.
The margin of error will be larger within regions and for
other sub-groupings of the survey population. The data was
statistically weighted to ensure the sample's regional and
age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population
according to the census data.
About RBC Insurance
RBC Insurance provides a wide range of, life, health, travel,
home, auto, business and reinsurance products, as well as
creditor insurance services to more than five million North
American customers. Its fast growing home and auto insurance
business offers Canadians a comprehensive range of personal
home and auto insurance products through direct sales channels,
including over the phone, the Internet, retail insurance branches,
as well as through group insurance plans. RBC Insurance also
offers a premier claims service, available 24/7, to help clients
when they need it most. For more information, please visit
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Kerry Gaetano, (905) 816-5583, firstname.lastname@example.org
Margie McNeil, (905) 606-1425, email@example.com