The top ten speeding capitals of the UK revealed
With the roads becoming busier than ever due to people returning to work after the pandemic, there has been a major increase in road accidents in the UK¹. In light of this, a new study reveals the top ten speeding capitals of the UK according to how many speeding tickets regional police constabularies handed out to reckless drivers in 2021.
Following a staggering 89% increase in searches for ‘speed awareness course online’ between January 2021 to January 2022², a new study from leading manufacturers of hostile vehicle mitigation systems, Heald, delves into the number of camera and officer issued speeding tickets administered by police constabularies in the UK last year.
The findings are based on insight obtained by Heald through Freedom of Information requests (FOIs) sent to 44 UK police constabularies³. The new report breaks down the key findings from the police constabularies FOI responses obtained by Heald. Out of the 44 police constabularies contacted, 23 responded.
According to the insight gathered, the top ten speeding capitals of the UK according to the total number of speeding tickets issued are:
West Yorkshire – 224,160
Avon and Somerset – 173,428
Thames Valley – 151,501
West Midlands – 95,093
Surrey – 87,270
Bedfordshire – 69,818
South Yorkshire – 67,255
Hampshire – 62,514
Lincolnshire – 59,525
Hertfordshire – 53,627
West Yorkshire, a metropolitan county in the North of England, tops the list for the most speeding tickets (224,160) issued by the region’s police constabulary. Out of the 224,160 speeding tickets issued in West Yorkshire, 3,615 of these were captured by police officers and 220,545 by speed cameras within the region. Currently, West Yorkshire has 402 fixed speeding cameras ready to catch out speeding drivers⁴.
Following the insight obtained by Heald, the police constabulary of Avon and Somerset revealed that a total of 173,428 speeding tickets were issued to drivers between January 2021 and January 2022. In Avon and Somerset, there are 36 fixed cameras, 1033 mobile cameras, and 24 red light cameras active to catch those driving over the speed limit⁵.
Ranking third in the new list, the total number of speeding tickets handed out to drivers by the Thames Valley police constabulary totalled a massive 151,501. The Thames Valley is part of the South East of England, and it includes the counties of Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Berkshire, Hampshire, Surrey, the Isle of Wight, West Sussex, East Sussex and Kent. Out of the 151,501 tickets issued to speedy drivers, 147,411 of these offences were captured by speed cameras and 4,090 by police officers.
The police constabulary of West Midlands comes in fourth. They issued 95,093 speeding tickets between the period of January 2021 and January 2022, which includes drivers of cars, HGVs, LCVs, buses and motorcycles. The West Midlands has 78 fixed speeding cameras in place to monitor the MPH of drivers, which is the least amount of speed cameras out of the nine UK regions⁶.
Surrey, located in the southeast of England, comes fifth in the list for the most speeding tickets issued in the UK. The county borders Greater London, Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, Hampshire, and Berkshire and is divided into 11 boroughs and districts. The Surrey police constabulary issued a total of 87,270 speeding tickets between the period mentioned above, with 2,196 being roadside-detected by a police officer.
Heald Managing Director, Debbie Heald MBE, comments of the findings: “It’s very worrying to see the increase in searches for speed awareness courses in the UK, and it’s even more shocking to see the number of speeding tickets handed out by police constabularies in the UK in the past year.
“What makes these figures even worse, is the knowledge that in 2022 there has already been 59,980 car accidents in the UK, with 4,391 of these caused by drivers exceeding the speed limit⁷. With more cars returning to the road after the pandemic, and major traffic routes rising above pre-pandemic levels, it’s almost inevitable that a large proportion of these drivers on the road will be acting carelessly.
“With the government encouraging a return to work, and the roads becoming naturally busier, councils would benefit from the funds to implement systems to protect pedestrians and surrounding buildings from road collisions as it would ensure people feel a sense of security when being in the vicinity of a busy road.
“Installing bollards would be the ideal solution for councils to ensure proper pedestrian and building protection and would mean an increase in safety and confidence. With the staggering number of road accidents recorded in the first two months of 2022, councils must be allocated a budget to install the appropriate measures.
“There has been huge groundwork put in across the manufacturing and security industry to develop products which can help improve the safety of the public, and the government, councils and other authorities must consider making use of these”.