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Who are the UK’s Clumsiest Drivers?

Gritty roads, potholes, unpredictable weather conditions, and the unavoidable hazards of everyday commuting can all leave our cars with nasty scratches and dents

In a recent nationwide survey, we set out to uncover the driving habits of the British public, focusing on instances of car damage over the past 12 months. With responses from thousands of participants, we were able to put together a list of the UK’s ‘clumsiest’ drivers. 

From city-specific trends to gender disparities and age group distinctions, our survey revealed insight into the driving mishaps around the country. So, let’s see which cities are the most accident prone…

Most to Least Clumsy Drivers by City

  1. Newcastle
  2. London
  3. Bristol
  4. Manchester
  5. Belfast
  6. Birmingham
  7. Nottingham 
  8. Edinburgh
  9. Norwich
  10. Southampton
  11. Leeds
  12. Glasgow
  13. Sheffield 
  14. Cardiff
  15. Liverpool

Topping the charts as the city with the most clumsy drivers is Newcastle, where a staggering 45% of respondents confessed to causing damage to their cars at least once in the past year. The next city prone to bumps and scuffs was London, with 44.7% of drivers seeing damage to their car, closely followed by Bristol with 44.3%. 

Busy roads and urban infrastructure are surely at hand in these results too. In fact, TomTom’s traffic index revealed Bristol and London to be two of the most congested cities in the country, though Newcastle was one of the least. 

But bustling big cities also appeared at the bottom of the list with the least clumsy drivers. Liverpool and Sheffield are infamous for congestion yet see a fraction of the scuffs of other areas. This may suggest that bumps and scuffs are less likely to do with busy roads and instead a result of mindful driving and care taken by individual drivers.

Only 29.1% of drivers in Liverpool claimed to have caused damage to their cars over the past year. Cardiff and Sheffield also ranked among the cities with the least clumsy drivers, with just 30.2% of Cardiff drivers and 32.2% of Sheffield drivers experiencing damage.

Men Take the Lead in Driving Mishaps

Delving into gender differences, our survey revealed an interesting statistic - men are more likely to cause damage to their cars. A notable 42% of male respondents admitted to incidents of car damage in the past 12 months, compared to just 36% of female drivers. 

25-34 Year Olds Are the Clumsiest Drivers

When it comes to age groups, the survey points to a surprising revelation. The 25-34 age group takes the crown as the clumsiest drivers, with a staggering 59% admitting to causing damage to their cars in the last year.

To put this into perspective, individuals in this age bracket are 2.5 times more likely to have caused damage compared to their counterparts aged 65 and over. But we can’t put this down to age and experience, because actually drivers in the 18-24 category saw less damage than 25-34 year olds.

Most to Least Clumsy Driver by Age 

  1. 25-34 Year Olds
  2. 18-24 Year Olds
  3. 35-44 Year Olds
  4. 45-54 Year Olds
  5. 55-64 Year Olds
  6. 65+

From bump-prone Gen Z and millennial drivers to the careful drivers in Liverpool, this survey highlights the habits of motorists across the country.

While external factors can’t always be controlled such as weather, fellow road users and road conditions, there are a few simple ways you can protect yourself from unnecessary damage to your car.

Firstly, always aim to park far away from other vehicles in busy car parks. This will help to avoid dinging doors, and trolleys on the loose and tight parking spaces which can lead to avoidable damage. 

While we wish we could control the weather, falling branches and debris caused by adverse conditions are some of the leading causes of cosmetic damage. Mitigate your risk by maintaining your property around your vehicle. Keep trees and branches well-trimmed to avoid falling on your car during stormy conditions.

Finally, aim to practice defensive driving. By anticipating and predicting any potential hazards you can make adjustments in your driving to avoid any easily made mistakes. Use your mirrors effectively, stay calm, and drive with care to keep your car free from any unsightly damage that may have otherwise been avoided.

As we navigate the roads, it's essential to stay mindful of these trends and work towards creating safer and more responsible driving environments for everyone. For more guidance, take a look at THINK!’s safety tips