SOURCE: Quality Planning

November 13, 2008 06:00 ET

Men Break More Traffic Laws, Drive More Dangerously Than Women, Concludes QPC Study

Study Reveals Stark Differences in How Men and Women Regard Traffic Laws; Because They Violate Laws Designed to Make the Roads Safer, Men Cause More Accidents and Expensive Damage

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwire - November 13, 2008) - Quality Planning, the ISO company that validates policyholder information for auto insurers, has released proprietary findings that reveal dramatic differences in the number and type of traffic violations received by men versus women. The findings show that, when it comes to traffic laws, women are far more observant of them than men, and that the laws violated more frequently by men are those laws designed to safeguard people and property.

Topping the list is the finding that men are cited for reckless driving 3.41 times more than women. Reckless driving is considered one of the most serious traffic offenses by courts since it implies a disregard for the rights and safety of persons or property.

Quality Planning analyzed 12 months' of 2007 policyholder information for U.S. drivers, comparing the number of moving and nonmoving violations for both men and women. Overall, the data shows that men are much more likely to receive a traffic citation than women, and that this difference in driving behavior is consistent across all age groups.

Violations for which men scored at least 50 percent higher than women:

TYPE OF VIOLATION                  Ratio
                                Male:Female
--------------------------------------------
Reckless driving                   3.41
DUI                                3.09
Seatbelt violations                3.08
Speeding                           1.75
Failure to yield                   1.54
Stop sign/signal violation         1.53

"We were not surprised to see that men have slightly more -- about +5 percent -- violations that result in accidents than women," said Dr. Raj Bhat, president of Quality Planning. "And because men are also more likely to violate laws for speeding, passing, and yielding, the resulting accidents caused by men lead to more expensive claims than those caused by women."

Interestingly, women drivers were also about 27 percent less likely than men to be found at fault (1-49 percent negligent) when involved in an accident. This again underscores the finding that women are on average less aggressive and more law-abiding drivers -- attributes that also translate to fewer accidents.

Study methodology

Traffic code violations data for a one-year period from 2007 and 2008 was used for this study. Violations were grouped by type and gender of the driver, and the percentage of violations for male and female drivers was estimated. Finally, the ratio of percentage of violations by male and female drivers was calculated to identify the difference in gender for each type of violation. For example, men were about 3.4 times more likely than women to receive a ticket for reckless driving.

About Quality Planning

An ISO business, Quality Planning focuses exclusively on providing rating integrity solutions to auto insurers. Quality Planning works with insurance companies to identify areas of significant rating errors using sophisticated database management, statistical analysis and modeling, customized survey design, and highly targeted customer interaction. Quality Planning helps clients work within their existing rating plans and charge fair prices to policyholders based on a true representation of risk. The company was founded in 1985 and is headquartered in San Francisco. For more information, visit www.qualityplanning.com.

About ISO

A leading source of information about risk, ISO provides data, analytics, and decision-support services to professionals in many fields, including insurance, finance, real estate, health services, government, human resources, and risk management. Using advanced technologies to collect, analyze, develop, and deliver information, ISO helps customers evaluate and manage risk. The company draws on vast expertise in actuarial science, insurance coverages, fire protection, fraud prevention, catastrophe and weather risk, predictive modeling, data management, economic forecasting, social and technological trends, and many other fields. To meet the needs of diverse clients, ISO employs an experienced staff of business and technical specialists, analysts, and certified professionals. In the United States and around the world, ISO helps customers protect people, property, and financial assets. For more information, visit www.iso.com.

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