Just Under Half of Canadians Dread Their City or Town’s Drivers

Practically seven-in-ten Canadians saw a driver not signaling before a turn in the past month. 

Vancouver, BC [September 6, 2022] – The level of confidence that Canadians bestow upon drivers in their city or town has dropped drastically over the past year, a new Research Co. poll has found.

In the online survey of a representative national sample, 48% of Canadians think drivers in their city or town are worse now than five years ago, up 18 points since a similar Research Co. poll conducted in November 2021.

More than half of Canadians who live in Atlantic Canada (61%, +36), British Columbia (57%, +13) and Ontario (56%, +26) say drivers are worse now. The proportions are lower in Alberta (43%, +10), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (42%, +7) and Quebec (34%, +10).

More than half of Canadians aged 55 and over (58%, +22) and aged 35-to-54 (52%, +20) claim that drivers in their city or town are worse now than five years ago. The proportion is lower among Canadians aged 18-to-34 (34%, +13).

The survey also tracks the incidence of six specific occurrences on the country’s roads over the past month. Practically seven-in-ten Canadians (69%, +14) say they witnessed a driver not signalling before a turn, a proportion that climbs to 74% in Manitoba and Saskatchewan.

A majority of Canadians (54%, +13) recently observed a car taking up two or more spots in a parking lot.

Practically half of Canadians (49%, +11) saw a driver not stopping at an intersection. This behaviour is more prevalent in Atlantic Canada (58%), British Columbia (55%) and Ontario (54%).

Two-in-five Canadians (40%, +8) witnessed a driver turning right or left from an incorrect lane, including 49% of British Columbians.

More than a third of Canadians (37%, +9) went through a close call, such as having to slam the brakes or steer violently to avoid a collision—including 48% of Atlantic Canadians and 44% of Albertans.

“Only 15% of Canadians say they did not see any illegal or regrettable behaviour on the road over the past month,” says Mario Canseco, President of Research Co. “This represents a 12-point drop since our previous survey in 2021.”

Just under three-in-five Canadians (58%, +7) claim that there are specific groups or people in their city or town who are worse drivers than others—a proportion that rises to 67% in British Columbia.

As was the case last year, the top four responses issued by Canadians who point the finger at a specific group for bad driving behaviours are “young” (40%, +8), “Asian (19%, +3), “elderly” (18%, -3) and “immigrant” (8%, +2).


Results are based on an online study conducted from August 19 to August 21, 2022, among a representative sample of 1,000 adults in Canada. The data has been statistically weighted according to Canadian census figures for age, gender and region. The margin of error—which measures sample variability—is +/- 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Find our data tables here and download the press release here. 

For more information on this poll, please contact:

Mario Canseco, President, Research Co.