When Passengers Push Your Buttons

Ever felt the need to ask an annoying passenger to get out the car? You’re not alone…

Researchers found the average car-owner gets annoyed at least three times by their passenger’s behaviour during the typical car journey – taking just six minutes for their blood to boil. Tempers have flared so much for one in five behind the wheel that they have asked a passenger to get out of the car!

Unable to keep their hands, feet and thoughts to themselves, the so-called ”backseat driver” was named the most annoying passenger to have in the car. They brake hard before every junction, slam the dashboard with their hands in panic, comment on every turn, and account for more than four in ten irritating passengers.

If you are not the ”backseat driver”, you might be the ”fiddler”, ”sleeper” or even the ”road rage passenger”…

Researchers studied the opinions of 4 000 drivers and it emerged a further one in ten fall under the ”fiddler” category – those bored individuals that twiddle with buttons, air con and switch between radio stations.

The “sleeper” is the type of passenger who nod off within minutes of setting off, snore, and only wake up when they arrive at their destination.

The “road rage” passenger is the one who embarrasses the driver with their fiery temper, instantly getting riled by other motorists on the road, uttering expletives, and at times waving rude hand gestures.

Tim Bailey, safety expert for Continental Tyres which carried out the study, said: “It is worrying that so many motorists are irritated to such extremes by their passengers. Driving is the time we need to be most alert, so a distraction such as an annoying passenger is likely to mean a driver losing concentration.

“We would suggest calmly letting the passenger know that what they are doing is distracting you, trying to calm down and most importantly, focusing on the road ahead.”