Law-breaking motorists on the streets of Mansfield have been allowed to continue driving – despite racking up more than 20 points on their licences.
Hundreds of drivers in Nottinghamshire are allowed to stay behind the wheel after committing numerous offences like speeding or driving without insurance, which would usually accumulate in a disqualification.
According to DVLA figures, 272 motorists in Nottinghamshire have all racked up more than 12 points and are still on the road.
Some have as many as 31 points – meaning they could have been caught speeding 10 times and still been allowed to keep driving.
In the Mansfield area, 59 drivers have more than 12 points – and there were six prolific offenders who have each received 22 points.
A Department for Transport spokesman said: “The majority of drivers who get 12 penalty points are automatically disqualified.
“In exceptional circumstances, judges and magistrates can use their discretion and decide not to issue a ban.”
A spokesman for road safety charity Brake said: “It is appalling drivers are able to get behind the wheel, despite showing a blatant disregard for safety. These drivers have been given plenty of chances to improve their behaviour.
“Allowing them to stay on the roads places countless others in danger and makes a mockery of our penalty points system, which is supposed to protect the public from dangerous repeat offenders.”
Brake is calling on the government to ensure all drivers with more than 12 points receive an automatic ban.”
Sir Alan Meale, Mansfield MP, said: “Anybody that gets that many points shouldn’t be on the road and anybody convicted of dangerous driving should be disqualified.
“Each case is different and many of these will be speeding offences. Speeding is one of those offences where it’s more about collecting money than better driving.
“Sometimes you see that where some speed cameras are placed they’re clearly intended to be cash cows.
“The other problem is many drivers who rack up points are those who have the money to afford the representation to argue they need their licences. These are the people who speed flagrantly.”
A Royal Courts of Justice spokesman said: “All judges and magistrates deal with each case individually. They make a decision based on the facts of the case and within sentencing guidelines.
“There may be aggravating and mitigating factors in each case which may influence the sentence.”Paddy Tipping, Nottinghamshire police and crime commussioner, said: “Vehicles are
dangerous weapons and I am conscious we need to be vigilant about people who have been to court and have points on their licence.
“Disqualification is a matter for the courts and not for me, but I recognise difficult judgements have to be made.
“Cameras are placed in dangerous spots to increase road safety and never placed to raise cash.”
Nottinghamshire Police said it employs a number of tactics to improve road safety, including proactive policing operations targeting the major causes of collisions, working with partner agencies to tackle issues at collision hotspots and education of road users.
A spokesman said: "We investigate road traffic collisions (over 8,158 injury collisions in the last three full calendar years) and part of those investigations will look at contributing factors to the collision occurring. If trends emerge we will work with partner agencies such as Highways England or local authorities to share the information so that they can take action, such as highway improvements or speed restrictions where necessary.
We also support international, national, regional and local campaigns including the 'Fatal 4' causes of collisions (drink and drug-driving, speed, using mobile phone at the wheel and not wearing seatbelts)."
How many points can you get for driving offences?
There are dozens of categorised driving offences, here are some of the most common and a few you may not have heard of:
- Driving a vehicle having failed to notify of a disability – three to six penalty points;
- Driving while disqualified – six;
- Driving without due care and attention – three to nine;
- Speeding – three to six;
- Failing to stop an after accident – five to 10;
- Furious driving – three to nine;
- Motor racing on the highway – three to 11;
- Using vehicle with defective brakes, tyres or steering – three.