Three-quarters of motorists across the world have admitted to using their mobile phone behind the wheel, while a fifth said they text while driving, new research has claimed.

According to a global survey by leasing giant Leaseplan, UK motorists are the third least likely (out of 17 countries and 5,000 drivers polled) to make a phone call on the roadl, after America and India, despite nearly half of UK motorists (43%) saying they do make phone calls while driving.

Leaseplan’s poll found that nine out of 10 Danish drivers have telephone conversations while driving.

UK drivers are the second least likely to text, just 8% admitted to doing so, compared with 33% of Hungarian and Swedish road users.

Brits are also the least likely to use social media behind the wheel (3%) compared with 22% of motorists in Holland, which topped the list.

Globally, those born between 1965-1981 appear to see less danger in multitasking, as 21% said they send texts while driving compared with 10% of those born between 1946-1964.

Other results from the survey found that 35% said they ate while driving, with the Dutch being the worst culprits (61%). Almost 70% of motorists also claimed they drink behind the wheel, and 2% of Slovakians said they have shaved while driving.

“It is encouraging to see that UK drivers appear to have a higher level of awareness around the dangers of mobile phone use when driving, but studies continue to show that driving ability is clearly impaired if motorists do use their phone,” said Lesley Slater, operations and business development director at Leaseplan. “The number of incidents now related to mobile technology and other distractions at the wheel, along with the number of people who choose to ignore current rules and laws, means that driver attitudes will have to change, particularly amongst younger people.”