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Majority of drivers 'ignore amber'

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A huge majority (85%) of British drivers race through traffic lights when they are on amber and about to turn red, a new survey has revealed.

The study by the Thrifty Car & Van Rental company showed that 16% of drivers regarded amber as a green light whereas 40% of them rarely stopped when the lights were on amber.

Racing through traffic lights might cause more accidents, which will push up van insurance premiums.

The survey found that 13% of motorists had had an accident or a near-miss after racing through an amber signal, while 50% were shouted at by their passenger. A total 26% of drivers were sworn at or hooted by other motorists.

As many as 35% of drivers did not realise that racing through an amber signal was an offence.

There is a still higher number of "amber gamblers" among 17-year-olds, the study said, with 88% of them had driven through an amber signal as it was about to turn red.

Chelmsford in Essex has the maximum number of amber gamblers, followed by Leeds, Coventry, Liverpool and Brighton.

© Press Association 2011