Four in ten drivers with 12 points aren’t disqualified10,072 law-breaking drivers keep their licence
19 October 2011
Four in ten drivers with 12 or more points on their driving licence are still driving on British roads, according to new figures obtained by road safety charity Brake.
Almost half of offenders avoid ban
Figures released by the DVLA to the charity Brake reveal that 43% of drivers with at least 12 points on their licence have not received a driving ban.
In total, 10,072 drivers in Britain who have amassed 12 or more penalty points for speeding and other offences - enough for most people to expect a disqualification - are still licensed to drive on UK roads.
32 points for driving uninsured
The most extreme case is a driver from Bradford with 32 points on their licence, who was caught driving uninsured four times.
Another driver with 27 points on their licence has been caught speeding on a motorway eight times, as well as driving with defective tyres.
Some 129 drivers have amassed 20 points or more yet have still kept their licence.
'Exceptional hardship' defence
Many drivers are apparently successfully pleading that being disqualified would cause 'exceptional hardship'.
Andy Goldby, Director of Underwriting and Pricing at Direct Line, said: "It seems 'exceptional hardship' isn't that exceptional after all. Someone who has accumulated more than 12 points on their licence has shown a complete disrespect for the law. It sends out an entirely wrong message that these individuals are still allowed to drive.
"Drivers with points on their licence are statistically more likely to have a collision and the likelihood increases with the more points they have. The system is being abused and it needs to be stopped."
Julie Townsend, Brake campaigns director, said: "We are asking the government to act quickly to address this appalling situation. Clearly when the points system was designed, it wasn't intended that nearly half of drivers with 12 points would evade disqualification. It is outrageous these individuals, who rack up offence after offence, are allowed to continue driving, causing enormous risk to the public.
"It's time for the government to get tough with these selfish, irresponsible and potentially deadly drivers, and put a stop to their illegal and dangerous driving before it results in a devastating crash."