Dozens of British drivers have been caught breaking the speed limit at least 10 times in the last four years, according to official figures.
While nearly 250,000 motorists have multiple speeding convictions, 38 have been caught more than 10 times, with one driver clocked breaking the limit a staggering 25 times in just four years.
Speeding carries a minimum penalty of three points which stay on a driver’s licence for four years, so four convictions in that period is usually enough to earn motorists a driving ban. However, some drivers manage to hang onto their license by pleading that losing it would cause them “exceptional hardship”, such as severe financial difficulties or limiting their or a family members’ mobility.
Others simply ignore driving bans and continue to speed while driving with a suspended or revoked licence or re-offend after serving a ban.
Millions of offences
Drivers with SP30 endorsements
1 endorsement – 1,855,083 drivers
2 – 213,654 drivers
3 – 28,534 drivers
4 – 2,078 drivers
5 – 412 drivers
6 – 138 drivers
7 – 62 drivers
8 – 34 drivers
9 – 17 drivers
10 – 10 drivers
11 – Eight drivers
12 – Five drivers
13 – Five drivers
14 – Four drivers
15 – One driver
16 – One driver
19 – Two drivers
22 – One driver
25 – One driver
The data, obtained from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) by the Press Association, relates to the number of SP30 endorsements handed out in the four years to April 20.
As well as the one driver with 25 endorsements, another had 22, two had 19 and 10 had 10. A total of 1.85 million had one endorsement as of April.
Disregard for lives
Government data shows that 220 people were killed and 1,493 seriously injured in 2017 in crashes were a driver breaking the speed limit was a contributory factor.
Samuel Nahk, senior public affairs officer at road safety charity Brake, called the figures shocking and said speeding drivers put everyone on the road “in grave danger”.
He told PA: “These dangerous, repeat offenders have had plenty of opportunity to change their driving behaviour, yet continue to show complete disregard for other people’s lives and the law.
“The law must be used to its fullest extent with increased use of driving bans and the closure of the ‘exceptional circumstances’ loophole to keep these dangerous drivers off our roads.”
Former Olympic cyclist Chris Boardman,who was appointed Greater Manchester’s cycling and walking commissioner in July 2017, criticised the use of the exceptional hardship excuse in so many cases.
He said: “A law that allows repeat offenders to keep driving because of ‘exceptional circumstances’ is protecting the criminal over the rest of us and is just plain wrong.
“The points system is the safety buffer and if three chances isn’t enough to get the message across, then you really shouldn’t be driving.”