A study by TRUE Solicitors has revealed the most common UK driving offences. Lockdown restrictions are easing and the roads are much busier now, which has shone a spotlight on driving standards and offences.

TRUE Solicitors scrutinised Government data over the past 10 years to rank the most common UK motoring offences, whether offences are increasing overall and if driving standards have got worse in that time.

According to Gov.UK statistics, there are approximately 37.9 million motorists on the road.

Most common UK driving offences

Speed limit offences15,904,000
Miscellaneous offences2,998,000
Licence, insurance and record keeping offences2,666,000
Dangerous, careless or drunk driving1,587,000
Vehicle test and condition offences626,000
Unauthorised taking or theft of motor vehicle55,000
Accident offences40,000

The total for all recorded offences is 23,876,000, meaning that 63% of all motorists are breaking the law.

Bad habits are making motorists worst drivers, which is evidenced in this report.

TRUE Solicitors scrutinised motoring offences over the past eight years including fixed penalty notices, written warnings and those found guilty in Court. Speeding offences have increased by 5% every year since 2011 and now account for about 40% of all driving offences.

Driving offences connected to driving licence, insurance and record keeping spans various aspects including driving whilst disqualified, uninsured vehicles, false statements of insurance, fraud and forgery. This has increased by 6% between 2014 and 2018 to 2,666,000 offences. It is ranked at No.3 and accounts for about 11% of all offences.

It won’t come as any surprise that mobile phone offences rank in the most common driving offences. The scope for dangerous, careless or drunk driving includes alcohol, drugs, using a mobile phone while driving and other careless driving offences. The total recorded driving offences in this sphere was 1,587,000 offences. This is ranked at No.4 and accounts for about 7% of all offences.

Driving brings with it a myriad of risks and the scope for accident offences spans various scenarios. These include failing to stop after an accident, failing to report an accident within 24 hours and failing to give your name and address after an accident. This is ranked at No.7 in the most common UK driving offences at 40,000.

UK Cities Searching for Driving Tips

TRUE solicitors have scrutinised Google Search volumes for ‘driving tips’ in some of the UK’s largest cities to reveal who is looking for most help with their driving after lockdown. The data between January – April 2020 revealed the following results.

LocationSearch Volume ‘Driving Tips’PopulationRatio
Manchester2,6002,730,0761,050
London14,3409,304,016649
Glasgow2,7501,673,332608
Nottingham1,480787,610532
Cardiff900477,627531
Liverpool2,450901,708368
Sheffield2,130730,158343
Leeds2,440780,000320
Sunderland910290,000319
Stoke-on-Trent1,290386,013299

Traffic congestion in Manchester has been widely reported and I know from personal experience that it is a nightmare to deal with. I have personally declined jobs in Manchester and it has been reported that others have as well to avoid the congestion problems. This may have some influence on these findings in terms of ranking.

London is known as one of the worst cities in the country for motorists to deal with. It is the capital city and most populated, so it’s no surprise to see it ranked behind Manchester.

That aside, it is clear from these findings that motorists are wary about returning to the roads again post-lockdown.

Top tips for staying safe on the roads

Driving standards are getting worse and this is evidenced in these findings. There have been more than 160,000 casualties on the roads according to the latest statistics.

This advice will help keep you stay safe on the roads.

  • Do not drive when tired and take a regular break, particularly if you are driving long distances. Have a bottle of water to hand so you stay hydrated.
  • Plan ahead and make alternative arrangements and leave your car at home if alcohol is involved. Don’t mix the bottle with the throttle.
  • Always maintain a safe distance between your car and the one in front. Keep to the two second gap and extend it during bad weather.
  • Look over your shoulder when pulling out or overtaking. Do not rely on your mirrors – vehicles may be in your blind spot.
  • Check your tyres have sufficient tread and are correctly inflated to the recommended tyre pressures.
  • Fresh air is also important to keep you alert. Do not have the heating too high and have an air vent with cool air pointing towards you.
  • Choose some music that you enjoy listening to.

Car ownership brings risks of having your car stolen and driving under lockdown also brings a myriad of risks that many motorists are now aware of. Car insurance risks is something else that motorists need to be aware of.

What are your thoughts on the most common driving offences? Can you add anything to the top tips to stay safe on the roads?

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