With winter just around the corner, Goodyear Canada today released its annual Goodyear Safety Survey of Canadian drivers, and the results are clear: when the temperature drops, our stress levels rise. According to the survey, conducted for Goodyear Canada by Leger Marketing, more than half of Canadian drivers admit to anxiety behind the wheel when driving in the winter, and six in ten drivers would be in favour of at least a 10% reduction in the speed limit during winter months. “Despite the fact that the pace of life continues to accelerate for many Canadians, what they’re saying loud and clear in the Goodyear survey is that when it comes to winter driving, it’s time to chill out and slow down,” said Scott Cho of Leger Marketing. “Thankfully, we are largely a nation of drivers that values getting from point A to point B safely above getting there quickly.” The survey also revealed that while many Canadians are anxious winter drivers, three-quarters would still rather be in the driver’s seat than the passenger’s seat when the roads get icy. And to better their odds of a safe arrival, half of Canadians plan to install winter tires in time for the first snowfall. “In most parts of Canada, going without winter tires is like going without a winter coat – you may get lucky and have mild conditions, but chances are you’ll need extra protection at some point,” said Gus Liotta, General Manager, Consumer Marketing, Goodyear Canada. “When the roads get icy, slowing down and installing winter tires should be your top two priorities.” Highlights of the 2003 Goodyear Safety Survey: A movement for moderation – 61% of Canadian drivers say speed limits should be decreased by at least 10% in the wintertime. – Atlantic Canadians lead the movement for moderation: almost three-quarters (74%) would be willing to throttle down in the snow. – Albertans are least in favour of slowing down, but more than half(55%) still think a slower pace on winter roads makes sense. – 67% of females approve of slower winter speeds and 54% of males say the same. Wheels for winter – As Canadians anticipate the return of winter and the treacherous driving conditions that come with it, almost half (48%) plan to install winter tires on their vehicles. – More than three-quarters (78%) of Quebecers and almost as many (72%)Atlantic Canadians plan to put “winter boots” on their cars. – While young drivers are often labeled reckless and old drivers overcautious, 57% of 18-24 year-olds are opting for the increased safety of winter tires, while only 39% of those 65 and older plan to do the same. Anxiety behind the wheel – 51% of Canadians admit that winter driving causes them anxiety, with six in ten (60%) women admitting ice and snow on the roads gives them the jitters, and 40% of men saying the same. – Experience counts: Quebecers, with their cold, snowy winters and nation-leading adoption of winter tires, have the least anxiety of all Canadian drivers, with just 45% reporting winter nerves. – British Columbians may act laid-back, but they are the most stressed out winter drivers, with 58% reporting anxiety when the roads get icy. Rather be the driver – Despite admitting that they find winter driving stressful, Canadians say “riding shotgun” in the winter is even more nerve-wracking – 75% would rather be behind the wheel than in the passenger seat. – This is more common among males, where 86% would rather do the driving, and among those who earn $40,000 and above, where 83% would rather take the wheel. Goodyear Canada is a leading proponent of safe driving, and the number one choice of tires for most vehicles that can’t take safety for granted, including, school buses, ambulances and police cars. Goodyear Canada recommends installing four winter tires on your vehicle for maximum safety. “More and more new vehicles are rolling off the assembly line with all-season performance tires, which provide great handling and ride in moderate climates and conditions, but aren’t designed for harsh Canadian winters,” said Liotta. “A good rule of thumb is that when you start wearing winter boots, your car should too.” The telephone survey was conducted for Goodyear Canada by Leger Marketing, a Canadian representative of the Gallup International Association between October 7, 2003 and October 15, 2003 with a representative sample of 1,505 Canadians adults. The survey is considered accurate within +/- 2.5%, 19 times out of 20.