Driv­ers pay for need for speed


Whangarei Report - - Driven -

Ac­cord­ing to new data by a UK in­surance firm, driv­ers in Eng­land and Wales have racked up a mas­sive 28 mil­lion fixed penalty no­tices (FPN) in a 10-year pe­riod.

Speed­ing was the motoring of­fence most pun­ished, and a shock­ing two mil­lion peo­ple re­ceived an on-the-spot ticket for not wear­ing their seat belt.

The in­surer Di­rect Line Car In­surance said a heavy right foot was the most com­mon rea­son driv­ers re­ceived a FPN, with 15 mil­lion handed out be­tween 2002 and 2012 for ex­ceed­ing the speed limit.

A fur­ther five mil­lion were is­sued for self­ish driv­ing be­hav­iours such as ob­struc­tion and park­ing of­fences while an ad­di­tional two mil­lion were caught not buck­ling up be­hind the wheel.

An­other two mil­lion no­tices were also handed out for other of­fences linked to show­ing a lack of aware­ness on the road.

These in­cluded fail­ing to fol­low in­struc­tions from traf­fic signs or ne­glect­ing pedes­trian rights, made up of fail­ing to give way, run­ning a red light or driv­ing some­where other than the road.

Some 852,488 driv­ers re­ceived a fine be­cause they were not upto-date with their pa­per work.

This in­cludes ve­hi­cle reg­is­tra­tion and ex­cise li­cence of­fences — mainly not hav­ing a vis­i­ble reg­is­tra­tion mark — as well as driv­ing with­out valid in­surance or while dis­qual­i­fied.

Gus Park, di­rec­tor of mo­tor at Di­rect Line said many of the FPNS is­sued were avoid­able, sug­gest­ing some mo­torists “fail to obey the ba­sic rules of the road”.

He said: “The anal­y­sis high­lights that millions of driv­ers are be­ing pe­nalised each year for flout­ing the most ob­vi­ous of traf­fic laws, such as speed­ing. Care­less driv­ers put lives at risk and are also a ma­jor source of con­cern and ir­ri­ta­tion for those mo­torists that abide by the law.”

Look­ing at the data on a re­gional split, driv­ers in Suf­folk, South Wales and Mersey­side were the worst of­fend­ers over­all. Driv­ers in North Wales were most likely to be caught not wear­ing a seat belt, while driv­ers in Mersey­side were most of­ten caught us­ing their mo­bile phone while driv­ing.

Mo­torists in Hert­ford­shire were most of­ten caught driv­ing unin­sured, but driv­ers in Cum­bria were the worst speed­ers, with 255 per 1000 of the pop­u­la­tion be­ing is­sued a FPN for speed­ing of­fences.

15 mil­lion FPNS were handed out be­tween 2002 and 2012.

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