Road Rage Could Be Hereditary

Parents passing on bad habits when teaching offspring to drive

Related Links

Sign up for email newsletters from,,,,,,, and

Parents who take it upon themselves to teach their children to drive can be passing on bad habits according to AA Driving School.

Although parents have a key role to play in learners' driving development, many lack confidence or up-to-date knowledge, or have developed bad habits.

Top of the list is poor use of mirrors – mentioned by one in four of a national panel of AA driving instructors.

Speeding, failing to check blind spots and not feeding the wheel when turning were next on the list, followed by braking too hard or too late.

Top 10 bad habits passed on by parents
(As reported by instructors at AA Driving School)

1. Not using mirrors properly (mentioned by 25% of instructors)
2. Speeding (14%)
3. Not checking blind spots (14%)
4. Not feeding the wheel when turning (14%)
5. Braking too hard or late (11%)
6. Driving too close to the vehicle in front (8%)
7. Letting the wheel slip through the hands (6%)
8. Having only one hand on the wheel (6%)
9. Criticising or getting angry at other drivers (5%)
10. Coasting in neutral (3%)

These findings come after a recent AA/Populus survey found that some parents are setting a bad example – and breaking the law – by drinking, using phones or even falling asleep while supervising learners on practice drives.

Learners who combine formal lessons from an instructor with practice with family or friends boost their chances of passing their test and are likely to be safer drivers.

According to AA Driving School director Simon Douglas "Parents should try to set a good example with their own driving – and remember to let the experts do the teaching, while they focus on helping their children gain experience."

March 23, 2011