BRANCHVILLE, NJ, March 28, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Dogs may be man’s best friend, but they’re not always safe driving companions. A recent survey commissioned by Selective Insurance, a leading business, home and auto insurance carrier, found that dogs are a common cause of distracted driving on US roads.
40% of drivers surveyed admitted to reckless driving as a direct result of their dog being in the vehicle.
Tweet this Dogs may be man’s best friend, but they’re not always safe driving companions. A recent survey commissioned by Selective Insurance, a leading business, home and auto insurance carrier, found that dogs are a common cause of distracted driving on US roads.
The study, conducted online by The Harris Poll, found that 91% of licensed drivers who drove their dogs in the past 12 months admitted interacting with them while driving. Many of these interactions required the driver to take their hands off the wheel or their eyes off the road. Of this group, nearly half (48%) said they are more distracted when their dog is in the vehicle than when it isn’t.
“We love our dogs. Some of their behaviors in the car, such as For example, sitting on a driver’s lap, jumping between seats, or sticking your head out of a window distracts the driver’s attention from operating a vehicle,” said Scott Smith. Vice President, Director of Safety Management, Selective Insurance. “To keep our roads safe, drivers must minimize distractions. This means our beloved pet passengers should be restrained in the back seat of the car and if they need to be tended, drivers should stop in a safe place first.”
Some of the more dangerous behaviors committed by drivers on the road with their dog in the last 12 months are giving food/treats/water (36%), taking a photo/video of their dog while driving (27% ), or keeping them in place (23%). Additionally, 40% of drivers surveyed reported having reckless driving as a direct result of taking their dog in the vehicle, such as:
16% experienced a lack of awareness of other vehicles in their vicinity. 13% braked heavily. 11% left the lane. 9% had a car accident.
A significant 70% of licensed drivers who have ridden their dogs in the past 12 months reported that their dogs were not buckled in the vehicle. Still, 82% of survey respondents agree that an unbelted dog in a moving vehicle can distract the driver. Some states have animal ownership laws for vehicles to ensure driver safety and concentration. However, awareness is low. Only 24% of licensed drivers who have ridden their dog in the past 12 months said they were very familiar with such laws in their state, compared to 34% who said they were not aware these laws existed .
Click here to view more results from Selective’s Distracted Driving Study and ways we can help keep our roads safe, K-9 companions safe and vehicles safe from distraction.
This survey was conducted online in the United States by The Harris Poll on behalf of Selective Insurance from March 2-6, 2023 among 2,044 American adults 18 years and older, including 992 licensed drivers, who have owned a dog in the past 12 years have driven months. Harris online survey sample accuracy is measured using a credible Bayesian interval. For this study, the sample data are accurate to +/- 2.8 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. Contact us for full survey methodology, including weight variables and subgroup sample sizes [email protected].
About selective insurance
Selective Insurance Group, Inc. (Nasdaq: SIGI) is a holding company for 10 property and casualty insurance companies that are rated A+ (Superior) by AM Best. Through independent agents, the insurance companies offer standard and specialty commercial, personal, and flood insurance through the National Flood Insurance Program’s Write Your Own program. Selective’s unique position as a leading insurance group and employer of choice is recognized by a variety of awards and honors, including inclusion in Forbes Best Midsize Employers in 2023 and certification as a Great Place to Work® in 2022 for the third consecutive year. For more information about Selective, visit www.Selective.com.
SOURCE Selective Insurance Group, Inc.