One in three drivers admit to travelling too fast on rural roads, new research reveals.
Road safety charity Brake has revealed that too many motorists are treating country lanes like their own personal racetracks, taking bends too quickly or recklessly overtaking other vehicles.
Brake believes that many drivers are lulled into a false sense of security because there is less traffic in the countryside.
In actual fact, rural roads are the most dangerous for any road user – 895 people lost their lives in collisions in the countryside in 2013.
Those in a car are twice as likely to be killed than in a built-up area and there is also an increased risk to cyclists and motorcyclists.
Julie Townsend, deputy chief executive of Brake, said that the charity regularly heard from rural communities which were being blighted by “incredibly selfish” driving.
“Country roads are not empty thoroughfares for traffic; they are living environments, full of unpredictable hazards around every twist and turn,” she said.
“We are urging drivers to slow right down on country roads this summer, especially for villages, bends, brows and bad weather, to respect the countryside and other people’s right to enjoy it.”
Brake is lobbying the Government to introduce a maximum speed limit of 50mph on rural roads, with even more stringent restrictions at blackspots.
They believe installing more speed cameras and improved paths for walkers and cyclists would also help cut the number of accidents.