Motoring offences prosecuted in the local courts

Bristol Road Justice brings together campaigners from Cycle Bristol CTC, Bristol Cycling Campaign and RoadPeace to highlight issues around road crime and the appalling level of death, injury and intimidation of cyclists on the city’s roads.

One of the national partners we work with is Action Vision Zero (actionvisionzero.org/action-vision-zero-roads-policing-campaign/). They have produced figures for motoring offences, prosecuted in court in 2015-2020, for each police force area, and compared them to the average figures for England and Wales (E&W). Figures for Avon and Somerset (A&S) are available in a PDF on their website.

Headlines from the last five years (2015-2020) are:

  • Prosecutions in A&S were up 8% and convictions up 10% compared to -20% and -17% for E&W
  • Despite publicity for the potentially fatal consequences of using a mobile phone while driving, prosecutions have declined in A&S by 46%
  • While there has been a modest decrease in drink driving prosecutions, those for drug driving have risen substantially
  • While convictions for drink and drug driving virtually always led to a ban for a year or more, only 8% of other motoring convictions led to a ban  And of those, the large majority, 95% in the case of the most serious speeding cases, are bans for six months or less
  • The low use of banning orders and their short duration means that most convicted drivers kept their licences and continue driving, even though their driving had been proved to be a danger to other road users