This report investigates the distribution of driving offences in Great Britain by analysing data from an archive of licensing information that was set up at TRL, the original information coming from the DVLA's Driver Licence file. The archive allows the details of the offences which have been committed over more than two decades to be linked to the offenders' personal details such as age, sex and any previous convictions for driving offences.
The first series of analyses focus upon the offences committed between 1994 and 2007. The rate of offences per thousand driver-years varies considerably by age and sex of driver over this period; men commit many more offences than women. The overall number of offences rose steadily in the late 1990s, followed by a rapid increase between 2000 and 2003; the number has declined, however, from 2005.
Penalty points are awarded for many offences, and those who receive 12 or more within 3 years are generally disqualified. In spite of the marked increase between 1997 and 2007 in the number of penalty points awarded, the number of drivers who were disqualified after receiving 12 or more points scarcely changed. The main reason is that drivers have taken longer to accumulate 9-11 points, leaving less time to incur additional points and be disqualified.

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