Brits Driving Badly: Top 10 Places Committing the Most Motoring Offences

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Moneyshake analysed the latest GOV.UK statistics to uncover which places have committed the most driving crimes. We studied 10 motoring offences across 43 police force areas in England and Wales to reveal which places commit the most and least offences proportionate to the number of registered cars, plus uncovered the equivalent points and fines issued in each area.

Explore the full database here.

Top findings: Brits driving badly results in over £300 million in fines

  • Brits hit with over 8.6 million points on their licences in one year
  • Norfolk has the most motoring offences overall
  • Wiltshire drivers revealed to have been fined the least
  • London drivers caught the most using their mobile phone
  • Essex has the most fines for careless driving and not wearing a seatbelt

16 points are given out every minute in the UK

The most recent government data shows that over 2.8 million Fixed Penalty Notices (FPNs) were dished out to drivers in England in Wales in 2019. Considering the minimum fine for each offence (between £50 and £300 depending on the severity), Brits driving badly could spend over £300 million in one year.

Not every motoring offence results in points on your licence, but for those that receive the minimum three points, Brits could have received over 8.6 million points on their licence in a year. That’s equal to 16 points given out every minute in the UK. Out of the 10 offences studied, six would land you with points on your licence.

Norfolk has the most driving fines per registered cars

The data shows that Norfolk has the most motoring offences overall, with a total of 106,876 fines issued. Compared to cars registered in the Norfolk police force area (485,188), that’s equivalent to one in five drivers (22%) hit with a fine per year.

See the top 10 places with the most motoring offences below according to the GOV.UK statistics, proportionate to registered cars.

Wiltshire revealed to have been fined the least

The area with the least fines proportionate to cars registered is Wiltshire, with just 2,656 fines issued in 2019 compared to 524,400 registered vehicles. This equals just 0.5% of drivers given an FPN.

Welsh territories Gwent and Dyfed-Powys are the second and third areas with the least penalties, based on the number of fines issued, with 3,192 fines issued to 474,100 cars (0.7%) and 2,329 fines to 283,700 cars (0.8%), respectively.

London drivers face over £35 million in motoring offence fines

The GOV.UK statistics show that drivers could be racking up millions of pounds in fines. When comparing the number of registered cars to penalties, Norfolk drivers could have racked up fines costing over £11.5 million and more than 300,000 points collectively.

While the London Met area has many more cars registered, it still appears to be a hotspot for motoring offences, with drivers facing over £35 million in fines and more than 875,000 points. See how much other areas could have accrued in fines and points below.

  Police Force Area  

  Total Fines  

  Cost of Fines  

  No. of Points  

 1. London Met 305,474 £35,030,910 875,061
 2. West Yorkshire 202,345 £21,078,750 589,434
 3. Norfolk 106,876 £11,547,920 311,955
 4. North Yorkshire 90,217 £9,162,600 263,223
 5. Merseyside 89,933 £9,224,070 253,842
 6. Bedfordshire 77,103 £8,181,090 229,788
 7. Northamptonshire 74,407 £7,763,770 207,384
 8. Humberside 55,027 £6,203,800 157,569
 9. Warwickshire 50,617 £5,214,600 149,625
 10. Cumbria  37,319 £3,835,500 111,078

Moneyshake analysed GOV.UK data showing the number of fixed penalty notices distributed for motoring offences in 2019 in England & Wales compared to registered cars. These figures were then multiplied by the minimum fine and points for each offence (between £50 and £300 in fines and 0 and 3 in points, depending on the severity).

London drivers are caught the most for using mobile phones, ignoring traffic signs and driving cars in poor condition

The GOV.UK database reveals that drivers in the London Met area have been caught the most times committing multiple offences, including using a mobile phone, ignoring traffic signs and driving cars in poor condition. Even though London has the most vehicles registered at 1.9 million, our study compared the number of fines with vehicles registered, so the amount of offences isn’t simply down to the capital having more cars.

5,548 FPNs were issued for the use of a hand-held mobile phone while driving, resulting in around £1.1 million in fines and 16,644 points. A further 30,919 fines were dished out for the neglect of traffic signs and directions and of pedestrian rights, which is the equivalent of £1.5 million in costs and 92,575 points.

Finally, for vehicle condition offences (including vehicles in a dangerous or defective condition), London drivers received 14,566 penalties, equal to £1.4 million in fines and 43,698 points.

Bedfordshire has the most drivers caught speeding, costing over £7.2 million

72,784 fines were issued to Bedfordshire drivers breaking the speed limit, costing offenders more than £7.2 million and 218,352 points. With 356,300 cars registered in the area, it’s the equivalent of one in five drivers (20%) getting caught for speeding.

Essex has the most fines for careless driving and not wearing a seatbelt

According to our research, Essex drivers have been caught the most for careless driving and seatbelt offences when compared to registered vehicles. 5,601 FPNs were issued to the Essex area for careless driving, potentially costing a huge £560,100 in fines and 16,803 in points.

Seatbelt offences won’t get you points on your licence, but Essex drivers should be aware of the hefty penalty for not wearing one. 10,939 fines were issued to offenders in Essex, costing around £1.1 million in fines.

Suffolk drivers received the most obstruction and parking offences

Parking appears to be problematic for Suffolk drivers who proportionately have the highest number of obstruction, waiting and parking offences. 4,310 FPNs were issued in 2019 compared to 422,000 vehicles, costing around £129,300 in fines.

What should I do if I receive a Fixed Penalty Notice?

If you receive an FPN from a police officer or in the post and you are guilty of the offence, you should pay the fine immediately (from £50 to £300 depending on the crime). If your offence also carries penalty points, they will stay on your licence between four and 11 years.

You can take the FPN to court if you want to appeal it, however this can be very expensive and will incur a higher fine, if the court finds that you’re guilty. Make sure to contact Citizens Advice for their recommendations before appealing your FPN.

Find more motoring research and news in the Moneyshake blog, including driving laws you didn’t know you were breaking plus how often young drivers are caught behaving badly. You can also browse our latest car leasing deals if you’re looking for a new motor – just try not to get a fine in it!