Students Need To Sharpen Their Driving Skills, Says Ford

Ford Driving Schools.

Many university students drive while using their mobile phones, most break the speed limit, and a significant number also drink drive, according to a survey commissioned by Ford.

Car Crashes

Research shows that worldwide, car crashes are the leading cause of death among young people, and in Europe, young people are almost twice as likely to be killed on roads compared with the average person.


Of those surveyed, 43 per cent admitted sending texts, 38 per cent swipe through apps, and 36 per cent take calls. Also, 60 per cent speed and 13 per cent drink drive. By comparison, of those who left school at 18, 45 per cent admitted speeding, 9 per cent drink driving, and 41 per cent using their mobile phones while driving.

Driving Skills For Life

The findings of the survey of 2,313 young people, who either study at university or left school at 18, were published as students across Europe prepare for Freshers’ Week when new undergraduates traditionally begin a heady round of partying to mark the start of their university life. Through its Ford Driving Skills for Life (DSFL) programme, Ford offers free training for young drivers. By the end of 2016, this programme will have trained more than 20,000 drivers across 13 countries in Europe.


“Getting to university is an incredible achievement and it is also where many of us make some of our strongest friendships. But we want to make sure these are lifelong friendships and help to ensure that these young people can one day look back with pride on successful graduation,” said Jim Graham, manager, Ford DSFL. “It is crucial students, and all young people, understand the terrible consequences, both for themselves and for others, that taking risks behind the wheel can lead to.”


University can be a demanding time socially as well as academically and the survey revealed that many students were also tempted to take further risks when driving. Of those surveyed:

  • 48 per cent said they would be tempted to drive a car overloaded with friends
  • 75 per cent would be tempted to drive after little or no sleep
  • 28 per cent would be tempted to get into a car driven by someone they knew had been drinking

Overall, 30 per cent of university students admitted they had been in an accident, compared with 25 per cent of those who left school at 18.


Ford UK’s Driving Skills for Life is taking place at the Excel Exhibition Centre in London on 18, 19, and 20 November, with a morning and afternoon session on each day. Registration is now open at