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How Do New York Drivers Stack Up Against Other States?

Based on information compiled by CarInsuranceComparison.com from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA), the American Motorists Association (AMA), and Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), New York has ranked 29th for the worst drivers in the nation.

Separately, these organizations already track which states have the most driver fatalities, the most tickets issued, and the most drunk drivers. Recently, the three organizations combined their efforts to demonstrate which states have the worst drivers.

Data for each state was translated into a ranking in each of the following categories:

  • Traffic violations issued
  • Failure to obey traffic signals
  • Fatalities per million miles
  • Drunk driving
  • Careless driving

Good overall scores translated into lower rankings for each category, and bad scores translated into higher rankings. The rankings were then totaled to determine a state’s overall score and overall ranking, with the highest scores indicative of the worst drivers.

New Yorkers should find some cause for concern as well as some cause to celebrate in these rankings. With a worst driver ranking of 29, New York is right about in the middle. Among the states with the worst rankings were South Carolina, Alabama, Montana, Kentucky, Arizona, Oklahoma, Florida, Texas, Missouri and Louisiana. Rhode Island was recognized as the state with the best drivers in the nation, followed by Connecticut, Massachusetts, Virginia, New Hampshire, Oregon, Maine, Illinois, Nebraska and Ohio.

New York just barely falls within the better half of all drivers. Its low-numbered rankings of fifth place in fatalities per million miles, 16th place in drunk driving, and 17th place in careless driving contributed positively to the overall score. These positive scores indicate that New Yorkers may be less likely to be involved in accidents, injuries, and fatalities caused by careless drivers. Additionally, New York drivers may also see fewer traffic convictions resulting from distracted driving, drunk driving, or other careless driving charges.

However, New York placed 44th in ticketing and 34th in failure to obey, scores which indicate that New Yorkers may be more likely to be ticketed than drivers in other states. Indeed, based on National Motorists Association data from July of 2010, New York was the seventh most likely out of all 50 states to issue traffic tickets to its drivers.

How do those numbers compare to the rest of the states? Among the other top 10 states with the worst ticketing ranks, six were among the top 10 worst for drivers overall. Indeed, of the 10 worst states for ticketing, New Jersey was the only state with a better overall driver ranking (39th overall).

Since New York drivers are among the most likely to receive traffic tickets and resulting fines, New Yorkers may also be more likely to require the assistance of an experienced NY traffic ticket defense attorney to ensure their rights are protected in traffic court.

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