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Nearly 3 in 4 Drivers Are Anxious About Driving in Winter Weather

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NEW YORK, Feb. 17, 2021 -- With brutal winter weather conditions impacting much of the country, 73% percent of drivers in America say they are anxious or afraid of driving in bad wintry weather such as snow, sleet or ice. A contributing factor to this fear and anxiety is a lack of preparation and awareness according to a new by LendingTree survey.

Key Findings:

  • 73% of drivers are anxious about driving in wintry weather, and 15% aren't confident at all. Wintry weather makes 84% of Gen Z drivers anxious — fewer millennials (74%), Gen Xers (71%) and baby boomers (69%) voiced their anxiety about driving in wintry weather.
  • 80% of women said driving in winter conditions made them feel anxious, compared with 68% of men. Additionally, three times more women (23%) say they're not at all confident in their ability to drive when there is snow or ice on the road when compared to men (8%).
  • Drivers in the South and Northeast are the most anxious about Winter Driving: 76% of those living in the snowy Northeast said they felt uneasy about winter driving. 75% of Southern drivers were anxious about driving in wintry weather, with 22% classifying themselves as completely unconfident.
  • Many drivers lack preparation for driving in poor weather conditions. 57% of drivers haven't checked their tire tread depth in the past two months, 55% don't check their tire pressure at least monthly and 29% regularly let their gas tank drop below a quarter tank, with 6% saying they usually do not fill up until the tank is nearly empty.
  • While more than half of all drivers have gotten stuck in the snow before, they aren't adequately prepared: While many drivers keep basics like a phone charger (58%), a set of jumper cables (54%), an ice scraper (54%) and a flashlight (51%) on hand, they're less likely keep essential items like a blanket (34%), snacks and water (29%), extra clothes (18%), a snow shovel (16%) or emergency flares (16%).
  • 48% of drivers don't think they got a full education about how to drive in winter weather. 35% of drivers aren't completely sure what to do if their car starts to skid. 19% of drivers pull over and 8% call a loved one despite the danger that these actions can pose on slick roads where visibility is lower than usual.
  • 1 in 3 drivers have been in a winter weather-related car accident. 38% of men experienced a winter-weather accident, compared with 27% of women. 43% of millennials admitted to being involved in crashes, the highest of any demographic. A quarter of all drivers also said their car was damaged by wintry weather unrelated to an accident.

According to Insurance expert Andrew Hurst, "Unsafe driving over the winter can cost Americans, especially those who don't have sufficient auto insurance coverage. 69% of the drivers we surveyed said they had to pay out of pocket for repairs their insurer did not cover. 25% said they spent more than $1,000 on repairs." He adds, "Damage caused by winter-driving conditions is covered by the liability portion of a typical car insurance policy only when another car strikes your vehicle. If driving conditions cause a single-car crash or damage a vehicle without causing an accident, you would need comprehensive and collision coverage to cover the expenses."

To view the full report, CLICK HERE

ValuePenguin commissioned Qualtrics to conduct an online survey of 1,124 licensed drivers, conducted Jan. 25-26, 2021. The survey was administered using a non probability-based sample, and quotas were used to ensure the sample base represented the overall population. All responses were reviewed by researchers for quality control.

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