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ONS Crime stats 2020: Dangerous driving up, but vehicle theft down – AA 

ONS Crime stats 2020: Dangerous driving up, but vehicle theft down – AA 

Statistics released by the ONS today* show that dangerous driving increased by 3% in 2020 compared to 2019 at a time when lockdown restrictions meant drivers should have been at home. 

Over the same period, vehicle related crime fell significantly including a two fifths (42%) reduction in 'vehicle theft from the person' and burglary related theft from a vehicle reduced by a quarter (24%). 

Full details of vehicle related crime are in the table below**;

Offence

2019

2020

% Difference

Burglary – Aggravated vehicle taking

5,582

4,829

-13%

Burglary – Theft from a vehicle

286,001

271,263

-24%

Burglary – Theft or unauthorised taking of a vehicle

113,644

94,915

-16%

Burglary – Vehicle interference

63,364

54,271

-14%

Vehicle theft from the person

114,753

66,429

-42%

Criminal damage to a vehicle

207,687

173,231

-13%

Dangerous driving

5,128

5,272

+3%

 

Jack Cousens, head of roads policy for the AA, said; "It is deeply troubling that some drivers felt that lockdown restrictions and quieter roads allowed them to drive dangerously. The lack of cars on the road mixed with their misconception that they wouldn't be caught only made their dangerous behaviour stand out more. 

"These statistics come a day after the Department for Transport revealed that quieter roads during the pandemic lockdowns unleashed a surge in speeding***. However, the level of law-breaking diminished significantly in the second lockdown after the police made it clear that it they were cracking down on anyone looking to exploit less traffic on the road. We hope to see a significant reduction in these figures next year. 

"At the same time, the stay at home messages throughout last year significantly helped reduce vehicle related theft and criminal damage. However, the AA has attended more catalytic converter thefts**** as the lockdown restrictions have eased. 

"As the UK begins to unlock, we hope that vehicle related crime continues to fall rather than be a short-term benefit of the pandemic."

*Article Source www.aa.com

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