As seen on:

SMH Logo News Logo

Call 1300 303 181

Australia’s Best New Car News, Reviews and Buying Advice

On The Road: the New Volvo Driver Is…..

As a freelance vehicle reviewer, amongst other things, I spend a fair bit of time on the road. As a driver safety and education promoter, I look at the habits of other drivers because, as a good driver, you should always be watching what’s going on around you. There’s plenty of non indication; swapping of lanes all of a sudden, without planning the merge; the usual colour blind drivers that believe red is green and so on. What stands out, for me, is how often it seems to be the same “kind” of person that is involved in situations such as these.

I’d say, by now, we’ve all heard the term “soccer mums”; these are the mothers that transport their and other kids around in a people mover vehicle, invariably a 4WD vehicle and invariably it’s a Prado. On the long but dead end road on which I live is both a high school (at the end of the road and therefore truly bad council decision making)soccer mum and a child care, both bringing plenty of traffic morning and afternoon. The majority of vehicle are SUVs along the lines of Prados and Volvo XC90s (ironically) with a few station wagons for good measure. The ones that consistently exceed the 50kmh posted limit are consistently the soccer mum driven SUVs.

When it comes to freeway driving and the failure to indicate, more often than not it’s two distinct groups; the P plater driver (who clearly should know better) or drivers over (roughly) 55. The quick mergers tend to be across the board. Social media chatter is a great source; each state claims they have the worst drivers due to xyz factors, which, to me, indicates a systemic failure of driver instruction Australia wide, especially at the P plate level. Sure, there’s a measure of personal responsibility that needs to be taken, responsibility that could be said to have been reduced as a safety factor thanks to the almost singular focus on speeding as a breach of road safety, plus an understandable frustration with poor road design and surfaces, however there’s a correlation between styles of driving and those that make the errors.

When it comes to the new Volvo drivers, my personal opinion is it’s those that drive SUVs and, as a general rule, it’s the soccer mums. And that’s worrying because of the cargo they carry: children.