New research into the UK’s motoring population has revealed some startling figures concerning the amount of penalty points accrued by drivers. Vantage Leasing discovered that the cumulative number of active penalty points on UK licences had reached 10.6 million in March 2019.
There are currently just shy of 41 million vehicle licence holders driving in the UK, and some 2.7 million of those currently have active penalties. This represents an average of close to four penalty points for each convicted driver!
In almost all cases, reaching twelve points means an automatic driving ban for a specified period, unless judges’ rule that a ban is not required. As of March, some 11,021 motorists had reached or surpassed a dozen points on their licences, though a small group had exceeded this number in a staggering fashion!
The most points accrued and active by March was 60, recorded against a motorist from East Sussex, while a 25-year-old female driver had reached 48 points.
For both private drivers and those in the motor trade, DVLA records for March show that there were 269 drivers with 20 or more points on their licence, with a remarkable 31 motorists passing 30 points!
If we look at regional variations, some remarkable statistics jump out. The area with the greatest concentrated mass of penalised drivers is in the Leeds and West Yorkshire region. There are just over 111,000 registered drivers living in Halifax, with close to ten percent having licence points.
This is the highest regional concentration, with a staggering 9.62 percent of motorists picking up penalties and more than 40 banned from driving. Bradford and Huddersfield also both have over nine percent of motorists offending, with other West Yorkshire areas featuring heavily in the list.
Slough, Luton and Bristol were the only non-Yorkshire regions to feature in the top 10 worst offenders. Having penalty points can negatively affect insurance policy premiums, suggesting that drivers in the Northern regions may not only be fined for picking up penalties, they may also have to suffer higher insurance policy costs too.
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At the other end of the scale, Kent boasts several areas where the proportion of offending motorists is lowest – Canterbury (3.72%) and Tunbridge Wells (4.16%) drivers are especially well-behaved! The stats for London are interesting; naturally as the UK’s largest city there are more drivers here with penalty points than anywhere else in the country, some 136,627 in total out of 2.9 million motorists.
Just under a thousand had reached the 12-point mark. However, the overall percentage of offending drivers (4.67%) is among the lowest in the country, perhaps reflecting that many people use alternative transport much of the time. There was no breakdown of stats to distinguish between owners of new and used cars.
So, if you want to stay points free, it’s worth remembering that the speed limit is for our road safety, it is not a speed target.