Do You Know How Fast You Were Going? Traffic and Speeding Ticket Statistics
By: Good2GoPublished: October 27, 2014
In the past, we revealed who the best and worst drivers are in the U.S. We also examined whether young adults or older adults were the safest drivers. In today’s post, we’re going one step further by highlighting who gets the most traffic tickets, which vehicles are the most ticketed, and other traffic violation statistics. So buckle up! It’s going to be a bumpy ride.
What is a traffic ticket?
A traffic ticket, also known as a traffic violation or a driving citation, is a notice issued by law enforcement officials to a driver or other motorist who has broken traffic laws. Traffic tickets generally come in two forms:
- Moving violation, such as exceeding the speed limit, or
- Non-moving violation, such as a parking violation.
In the U.S., most traffic laws are codified in a variety of state, county and municipal laws. Most minor violations are classified as civil infractions, which include non-moving violations, defective vehicle equipment, seatbelt and child-restraint safety violations, and insufficient proof of registration, license, or insurance.
If you are ticketed, you may have the option of mailing your local court or the court in the jurisdiction you were ticketed in a plea of guilty, not guilty or nolo contendere (you do not wish to contend). You can also request a mitigation hearing, which acknowledges your guilt, but also requests a reduction in your fine associated with the ticket. In the event of more serious offenses, like speeding 40 miles over the limit, you may be required to make a court appearance, depending upon which state you live in. Don’t miss that date without a court approved excuse, or a warrant may be issued for your arrest.
Traffic stop statistics
Traffic stop data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics found that in 2008 a greater percentage of male drivers (9.9%) than female drivers (7.0%) were stopped by police during traffic stops. Speeding was reported as the most common reason for being pulled over and approximately 85% of drivers who were pulled over by police felt they had been stopped for a legitimate reason.
Also in 2008, 5% of traffic stops led to a search of the driver, the vehicle, or both. Police were more likely to search male drivers (7.4%) than female drivers (1.6%). In most states, your permission is required before such a search can commence. Remember that you are not obligated to agree to the search.
Who gets the most tickets?
In a self-selected survey by Esurance, 79% of males reported having received a ticket whereas 64% of females reported being ticketed. Men received more tickets due to speeding, but females received more parking violations.
On a state level, Floridians are the speed demons of the U.S. with 50% having received a speeding ticket. For New Yorkers, parking tickets seem to fall from the sky as The Empire State brings in the most parking violations at 31%.
States with the most traffic tickets
According to the Statistic Brain, out of the 196 million drivers in the U.S., an average of 41 million will receive speeding tickets each year. That’s close to 112,000 tickets per day!
The top 10 states that receive the most driving citations are:
- New York
- North Carolina
The average cost of a speeding ticket (including fees) is $152. That means over 6 trillion dollars are paid out each year in speeding tickets – $6,232,000,000 to be exact. That’s a great deal of revenue for the municipalities and states collecting the fines.
Which cars get the most traffic tickets?
While it makes sense to blame the driver for a traffic violation, sometimes it’s hard to resist pushing the limits of the road when you own a souped-up vehicle that packs plenty of horsepower. Insurance.com reviewed data from over 550,000 insurance quotes and 526 car models to determine which cars get the most tickets.
Here’s a look at the top 10, in terms of the percentage of vehicles sold whose drivers were ticketed:
- Subaru WRX: 33.6%
- Pontiac GTO: 32.7%
- Scion FR-S: 32.6%
- Toyota Supra: 30.8%
- Subaru Tribeca: 29.7%
- Volkswagen Rabbit: 29.6%
- Mercury Topaz: 28.8%
- Scion tC: 28.8%
- Toyota FJ Cruiser: 28.4%
- Mazda2: 28.1%
As you can see, one in three Subaru WRX drivers received traffic tickets while driving their turbocharged steed. One version of the WRX is the STI which has 305 horsepower. According to Car and Driver “88 percent of [Subaru WRX] STI buyers are highly testosteronated males”. Coincidence? You decide. For a complete list of cars that receive the most traffic tickets (and to see where your car ranks) click here.
There are many factors that contribute to whether a driver gets a ticket or not. In any event, if you find yourself in a position where it is likely that you will receive a citation, use these four tips that may help you get out of a traffic ticket.
Good2Go wants you to drive safe – and affordably. Find out how you can protect yourself with Good2Go.com auto insurance. Get a car insurance quote today.
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