Car Insurance Monitor

Analysing the driving convictions data in more detail, we look at the second highest category of driving convictions for careless, reckless or unfit driving.

Out of all convictions in our analysis, 12.0 per cent fall into this offence group. Of all the different variants of driving conviction, this group of offences is the only one that has increased year-on-year with 1.5 per cent of quotes having a conviction in this classification (Quarter 3, 2012) compared to 1.4 per cent during the same time in 2011.

Eight different types of conviction are grouped together in this driving offence category and the stand-out conviction, accounting for the highest proportion of offences, is 'driving whilst using a mobile phone' which has 9.6 per cent of all convictions and the second highest recorded in our data behind 'Exceeding Statutory Speed Limit (SP30)'.

Driving Offences

Driving Offence Group Proportion of Total Offences Driving Offence Proportion of Offence Group
Careless, Reckless, and Unfit Driving/Accidents 12.0% Driving Whilst Using A Mobile Phone 80.5%
Driving an Unfit Vehicle 9.0%
Driving Without Due Care Or Reasonable Consideration 6.7%
Failure to Stop and Report an Accident 3.4%
Other Reckless Driving (not elsewhere classified) 0.2%
Undefined Accident Offence 0.1%
Causing Death By Careless Or Inconsiderate Driving 0.03%
Causing Death by Dangerous or Reckless Driving 0.03%

Focusing on the mobile phone-related driving convictions data, we can see that male drivers are more likely to have a conviction for this offence than females, with a rate of 1.4 per cent of quotes with a conviction compared to 0.8 per cent for female drivers.

The worst offenders are those in the 25-39 age group, with a conviction rate of 1.6 per cent. Looking at the areas of the UK with the highest rate of offences, South and Mid Scotland take the top two places regionally showing where conviction levels are most concentrated. However, looking more closely at the postal towns with the highest rates of offences reveals the specific places with the worst results in Scotland and the rest of the UK.

Highest Amount of Offences

Rank Postal Town & Postcode Area Percentage rate
1 Motherwell ML 3.2%
2 Glasgow G 2.7%
3 Kilmarnock KA 2.4%
4 Paisley PA 2.1%
5 Watford WD 2.1%
6 Liverpool L 2.0%
7 Falkirk and Stirling FK 2.0%
7 Chelmsford CM 1.8%
7 Southend-on-Sea SS 1.7%
7 Dumfries DG 1.6%

Lowest Amount of Offences

Rank Postal Town & Postcode Area Percentage rate
1 Oxford OX 0.41%
2 Llandrindod Wells LD 0.46%
3 Reading RG 0.50%
4 Dorchester DT 0.55%
5 Plymouth PL 0.58%
6 Stoke-on-Trent ST 0.58%
7 Bath BA 0.60%
8 Exeter EX 0.63%
9 Bristol BS 0.63%
10 Taunton TA 0.64%

We can also see from the data the professions most likely to hold a conviction for using a mobile phone whilst driving. Many of those listed in the table for the highest number of convictions would typically spend more time in their vehicle than other professions and also might be use a phone as part of their job.

Highest Amount of Offences

Profession Percentage rate
Heating Engineer 6.2%
Gas Fitter 5.3%
Gas Technician 5.1%
Plumbing & Heating Engineer 5.0%
Courier 4.6%
Property Developer 4.1%
Delivery Courier 4.0%
Surveyor 3.8%
HGV Driver 3.8%
Heating & Ventilation Engineer 3.7%

Lowest Amount of Offences

Profession Percentage rate
Retired 0.18%
Student 0.29%
Picker 0.30%
Check-Out Assistant 0.31%
Dinner Lady 0.31%
Packer 0.32%
Librarian 0.36%
Paramedic 0.41%
Hospital Worker 0.42%
Research Scientist 0.42%


Kevin Pratt, insurance expert at MoneySupermarket commented:

In this day and age, near enough every driver will also be the owner of a mobile phone and our reliance on this gadget to keep us in touch with friends, family and our workplace means more of us are prepared to use them when at the wheel. It is clear that using a handset whilst driving, whether that be for keeping up with social networking, getting directions or texting and talking to friends, family or work colleagues, is a big distraction for drivers and one that can have dire consequences. It only takes a second of lost concentration to cause an accident so drivers really should abide by the law and not use their phone whilst driving - for their own good as well as pedestrians and other road users.”

†82% of shoppers obtained a quote in 5 minutes or less. Source eDigitalResearch December 2012.