SOME of the worst drivers in the country have been caught breaking the law on roads in Avon and Somerset.

The police force area saw a staggering 200,000 driving offences committed between 2016 and 2017, according to government data.

That equates to 1,785 offences per 10,000 motorists.

Avon and Somerset is also the speeding capital of the UK - as well as having the highest number of driving offences in the nation, they also come out as the top area for speeding.

Regtransfers.co.uk came up with the statistics after combining data on fixed penalty notices to create an interactive map that highlights the UK’s driving offence hotspots - and where you're most likely to be caught.

Yeovil Express:

The UK has a host of driving and traffic laws which can catch out even the most savvy motorist, carrying harsh penalties and even harsher fines.

Based on 2.7million offences racked up by British motorists between 2016 and 2017, an interactive map breaks the crime hotspots down into eight separate categories, from speeding to running lights and ignoring signs.

The data was then weighted ‘per 10,000 drivers’ for each police force area to get proportionate results.

The research found that Avon and Somerset has the worst driving record overall.

The top 5 hotspots for all driving offences are:

  • 1. Avon and Somerset - 1,785 offences per 10,000 drivers;
  • 2. Cumbria - 1,455 offences per 10,000 drivers;
  • 3. Warwickshire - 1,410 offences per 10,000 drivers;
  • 4. Norfolk - 1,388 offences per 10,000 drivers;
  • 5. Bedfordshire - 1,385 offences per 10,000 drivers.

Drivers in Avon and Somerset also racked up the most speeding fines, with 1,657 offences per 10,000 drivers.

Cumbria (1,383 per 10,000 drivers) and Warwickshire (1,311 per 10,000 drivers) had the second and third worst speed limit-breaking records in the country.

In fact, exceeding the speed limit is the most common driving offence across the whole of the UK.

According to research around half of us admit to speeding on motorways and a third of us drive above the speed limit in built up areas.

The data shows that last year there were more careless driving penalty notices in Scotland than any other area in the country. A total of 11,890 penalty notices were issued, which works out at 36 per 10,000 drivers in the area.

Scotland is also the number one hotspot for driving without a licence or insurance (139 per 10,000 drivers). In fact, they had more than double the amount of penalty notices issued compared to London, which came in second place, with 61 offences per 10,000 drivers.

Although being caught using a mobile phone behind the wheel dropped by more than 40% in 2017, it still didn’t stop some drivers reaching for their handheld device. More than 25,000 penalty notices were issued in London last year for drivers caught illegally using their mobile phones. That works out as 52 offences per 10,000 drivers, making London the number one hotspot. Norfolk and Thames Valley came in joint second place (50 offences per 10,000 drivers).

Leicestershire drivers are most likely to hit the accelerator rather than slow down when they see traffic lights changing from green to amber as they received most penalty notices for running lights and ignoring traffic signs. For every 10,000 drivers in the area, 131 were ticketed between 2016-2017. Drivers in Greater Manchester, Avon and Somerset, Merseyside and South Yorkshire were also among those most likely to receive a fixed penalty notice.

If you’re a driver in Gwent, you're more at risk of a parking fine than anywhere else in the UK, with drivers receiving a total of 6,500 penalty notices in 2017 (that works out at 178 notices issued for every 10,000 drivers). Suffolk was the second-most likely place for motorists to be fined over parking, with penalties reaching a total of 3021 (that’s 58 notices for every 10,000 drivers). Cambridgeshire, Northamptonshire and Thames Valley made up the remaining parking fine hotspots.

In Essex, the number of drivers being pulled over for not wearing seatbelts led to 5,819 penalty notices (47 for every 10,000 drivers). North Wales, Thames Valley, West Yorkshire and Lancashire also made the top 5 hotspots for seatbelt offences.

Angela Banh, of Regtransfers, said: “The data reveals some alarmingly high figures for fixed penalty notices across the UK.

"It’s crucial to abide by the laws of the road, even if your car is in perfect working order, committing driving offences puts not only you, but other road users in danger.

"With British drivers now being hit with more severe punishments than ever before, we may see these numbers decrease in the near future.

"We hope the data will make people think twice next time they consider speeding, or driving while using their mobile phone. Drivers should always stay safe on the roads."