GMAC test: Idaho drivers score 11th nationally
The good news is Idaho drivers remain among the most knowledgeable in the country when it comes to understanding the rules of the road. The bad news is Idaho fell from best in the nation on the annual GMAC Insurance knowledge test in 2009 to eighth last year and 11th this year.
GMAC has provided an online knowledge test the past seven years, and Idaho drivers typically score among the best in the U.S. The latest test reveals only 6.9 percent of Idaho drivers failed the test, and the average score for Idahoans who took the voluntary test was 80.8.
Oregon drivers were the best in the Northwest, finishing fifth nationally with an average score of 81.3 and a fail rate of 13 percent.
If you’re planning to rent a car and tour New England, you might want to check the box on the rental form for additional insurance. Generally, knowledge of basic driving rules in the Northeast was the worst in the country. Washington, D.C. drivers finished 51st. Only slightly better were Maryland, 49; New Jersey, 48; Massachusetts, 47, New York, 45; and Rhode Island, 44.
The 2011 GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test results, released May 26, revealed that nearly 1 in 5 drivers on the road today cannot meet the basic requirements to get a driver’s license,. That means 36.9 million American drivers – roughly 18 percent – would not pass the written drivers test if taken today. Kansas continued its reign in first place (82.9 percent average score), while New York was bumped from last by Washington, D.C. (71.8 percent average score).
(Take the test and view the full results at www.gmacinsurance.com.)
“The GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test has become the benchmark for America’s driving IQ,” said Scott Eckman, chief marketing officer, GMAC Insurance. “All drivers need a refresher course when it comes to rules of the road and it begins with education. We’re hoping this year’s GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test results will inspire drivers to arm themselves with the knowledge they need to stay safe.”
The average score of all drivers increased from 76.2 percent in 2010 to 77.9 percent this year, but results suggest that a great number of people on the road still lack basic driving knowledge, which can lead to dangerous driving habits.
Eighty-five percent could not identify the correct action to take when approaching a steady yellow traffic light, and only a quarter were aware of safe following distances.
Without critical driving comprehension, many drivers run the risk of increased accidents or near accidents, where they often come to the realization of their lack of knowledge on rules of the road.
The GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test sets out to remind drivers to re-up their credentials before such events occur.
The seventh annual survey polled 5,130 licensed drivers ages 16-65, from 50 states and the District of Columbia. The 2011 test gauged driver knowledge by administering 20 questions taken from state Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) exams. The test was administered online by TNS, the world’s largest custom research agency. National data was weighted to percentage of state population, age, gender and ethnicity.
GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test highlights
Males are better drivers?
Northeast is worst driving region
The older the wiser
Be careful in the Empire State and Beltway
New York, no longer last, moves to 45th after placing last three years in a row with a score of 75.3 percent.
Biggest gains and losses
Best and worst
Most (and least) improved