Staggering figures released today show that there are more drink drivers in Harrogate than anywhere else in the country.
Car drivers in the town have topped a list for the highest number of convictions nationwide in an investigation by Moneysupermarket.com.
More than eight in a thousand people applying for car insurance in Harrogate revealed a conviction, compared to an average of just five nationwide.
Hereford and Cardiff closely followed Harrogate on the list, with an average of seven convictions per 1,000 people.
“Our convictions data presents a stark reminder to motorists that they should not drive under the influence of alcohol or drugs,” said Kevin Pratt, car insurance expert at Moneysupermarket.com.
“Not only does it put the safety of the driver and any passengers at risk, but it also endangers other road users and pedestrians.”
Rural areas topped the list, with South Wales and Scotland featuring prominently. At the other end of the scale, motorists from London had the fewest convictions at 3.8 per 1,000 quotes.
The research, carried out by Moneysupermarket.com, analysed 14 million car insurance quotes over 12 months.
It revealed that male drivers are nearly three times more likely to have a conviction, and those aged 20 - 29 had the highest conviction rate.
Simon Best, chief executive of IAM, said: “Crashes caused by drinking and driving are totally avoidable and this survey shows there are still far too many male drivers willing to risk lives and livelihoods by consuming alcohol before they get behind the wheel.
“Men simply need to take more personal responsibility and stick to the simple advice – if you drive don’t drink.”
Kevin Pratt added: “While the data shows there are clearly driving conviction ‘hotspots’, particularly in parts of the country where consumers rely on their cars for all their transport needs, every motorist should ensure they stick to the legal guidelines and not drive under the influence.”
The top 10 is dominated by typically male and blue-collar professions with scaffolders coming top with 22.5 convictions per 1,000 quotes followed by roofers with 18.9 convictions per 1,000 quotes.
Professions with the lowest proportions of drink or drug-related convictions include school students, with just 0.17 convictions listed per 1,000 quotes followed by paramedics with 0.20 convictions per thousand quotes and driving instructors with 0.50 drink or drug related offences per thousand quotes.
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