The Best and Worst Drivers by State in 2022

The worst drivers by state include Utah, Idaho, Colorado, South Carolina, Wyoming, Wisconsin, Virginia, Nebraska, Iowa, and Ohio. Conversely, the best drivers by state include Arkansas, Florida, West Virginia, Louisiana, Kentucky, New Jersey, Mississippi, Nevada, New York, and Michigan. However, the most common infractions in states with the best drivers are at-fault accidents, and many of them have higher-than-average auto insurance rates.

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Rachel Bodine graduated from college with a BA in English. She has since worked as a Feature Writer in the insurance industry and gained a deep knowledge of state and countrywide insurance laws and rates. Her research and writing focus on helping readers understand their insurance coverage and how to find savings. Her expert advice on insurance has been featured on sites like PhotoEnforced, All...

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Written by Rachel Bodine
Feature Writer Rachel Bodine

Dan Walker graduated with a BS in Administrative Management in 2005 and has been working in his family’s insurance agency, FCI Agency, for 15 years (BBB A+). He is licensed as an agent to write property and casualty insurance, including home, auto, umbrella, and dwelling fire insurance. He’s also been featured on sites like Reviews.com and Safeco. He reviews content, ensuring that ex...

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Reviewed by Daniel Walker
Licensed Auto Insurance Agent Daniel Walker

UPDATED: Jun 29, 2022

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Things to Remember

  • The 10 states with the worst drivers include Utah, Colorado, Wyoming, Virginia, Iowa, and Ohio
  • The 10 states with the best drivers include Florida, Louisiana, Kentucky, New Jersey, New York, and Michigan
  • Even in the states with the best drivers, the most common driving infraction is an at-fault accident
  • Many of the states with the best drivers pay the highest auto insurance rates, which could indicate risk in other areas

People all over the country will claim that their state is home to the worst drivers. However, it most likely isn’t the truth. Below, we’ve compiled a list of the worst and best drivers by state. These lists are based on the percentage of drivers with and without a clean driving record.

While the list below could simply be a topic that sparks your curiosity, it may be worth it to look into the driving trends in your area to determine whether you have adequate auto insurance in case of an accident.

Enter your ZIP code into our free quote comparison tool above to make sure you’re getting the cheapest auto insurance while you review the best and worst drivers by state.

Which 10 states have the worst drivers?

The top 10 worst drivers by state have been identified based on at-fault incidents listed on auto insurance applications as well as traffic fatality rates from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. At-fault incidents may include accidents, DUIs/DWIs, speeding, reckless driving, and more. With that being said, here are the states with the worst drivers:

10. Utah

In Utah, 25% of drivers list a prior at-fault incident on their auto insurance applications. Drivers in Utah receive citations for illegal behavior 14% more than the national average. However, there are only 7.7 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people, which is 30% lower than the national average.

9. Idaho

Idaho has held the ninth spot for state with the worst drivers since 2019. However, the percentage of drivers with an at-fault incident on their auto insurance applications has fallen from 28% to 25%. However, the traffic incident rate in Idaho is 16% higher than the national average, and there are 12.5 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people.

8. Colorado

Drivers in Colorado receive driving citations 18% more than the national average. In addition, 26% of drivers have an at-fault incident listed on their auto insurance applications. While there are 10.3 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people, this is comparable to the national average.

7. South Carolina

In South Carolina, traffic citations occur 19% more frequently than the national average. In addition, 26% of drivers have an at-fault incident listed on their auto insurance applications. However, even worse is that South Carolina ranks as the fourth state with the most traffic fatalities per capita at 19.4 deaths per 100,000 people. Deaths occur 44% more often compared to the national average.

6. Wyoming

Wyoming drivers receive traffic citations 19% more often than the national average. In addition, 26% of drivers have an at-fault incident listed on their auto insurance applications. Wyoming also has the second-highest rate of DUIs and the fifth-highest rate of rude driving. To top that, Wyoming has the highest rate of traffic fatalities in the country with 25.4 deaths per 100,000 people.

5. Wisconsin

Wisconsin drivers receive traffic violations 19% more than the average driver. In addition, 26% of drivers listed an at-fault incident on their auto insurance applications. Wisconsin has the fourth-highest rate of DUIs and the seventh-highest rate of rude drivers. However, Wisconsin has 9.7 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people, which is slightly lower than the national average.

4. Virginia

In Virginia, drivers receive traffic citations 20% more frequently than the national average. In addition, 27% of drivers have an at-fault incident listed on their auto insurance policies. Virginia has 9.7 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people. However, it came in first for the rudest drivers in the country.

3. Nebraska

Drivers in Nebraska receive traffic citations at a rate that is 21% more frequently than average. In addition, 27% of drivers have an at-fault incident listed on their auto insurance policies. There are 12.8 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people, which is 15% higher than the average.

2. Iowa

Iowan drivers receive traffic violations 21% more frequently than the national average. In addition, 27% of drivers list an at-fault accident on their auto insurance applications. There are 10.6 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people, which is similar to the national average.

Finally, which state has the worst drivers?

1. Ohio

Drivers in Ohio receive traffic citations 25% more frequently than the average driver. They top the charts for the most traffic citations and the most speeding tickets per capita. Ohio also has the sixth-highest rate of rude drivers. However, Ohio has 9.9 traffic fatalities per 100,000 people, which is slightly below the national average.

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Which 10 states have the best drivers?

Again, the top 10 states with the best drivers have been determined by the number of drivers with no at-fault incidents listed on their auto insurance applications. Below are the states with the best drivers:

10. Arkansas

Out of nearly 2.2 million drivers in Arkansas, 82% of them have clean driving records. Compared to the average driver in the United States, Arkansas drivers are 5% more likely to have no citations on their driving record. However, the most common driving violation on a driver’s record in Arkansas is an at-fault accident.

9. Florida

Florida has an astounding 15.6 million licensed drivers in the state. Out of those drivers, 83% of them have clean driving records. However, Florida drivers’ most common driving infraction is an at-fault accident. In addition, they also pay some of the highest auto insurance rates in the country, which could indicate that there is a risk of other types of damage to your vehicle, such as theft, natural disasters, or uninsured drivers.

8. West Virginia

There are approximately 1 million licensed drivers in West Virginia, and about 83% of them have a clean driving record. Again, the most common driving infractions for drivers in West Virginia are at-fault accidents.

7. Louisiana

Out of 3.5 million licensed drivers in Louisiana, about 83% of them have a clean driving record. However, the most common driving infraction for Louisiana drivers is an at-fault accident. In addition, Louisiana has higher-than-average auto insurance rates, which could indicate some risk.

6. Kentucky

Kentucky has approximately 3 million licensed drivers. About 83% of them have clean driving records. Therefore, Kentucky drivers are 6% less likely to receive a traffic citation than the average driver. However, the most common driving infraction for Kentucky drivers is an at-fault accident.

5. New Jersey

With about 6.4 million licensed drivers in New Jersey, about 83% of them have clean driving records, which can come as a surprise to some citizens of the region. With that being said, the most common driving violation in New Jersey is also at-fault accidents.

4. Mississippi

Mississippi has about 2 million licensed drivers, and about 84% of them have clean driving records. On top of that, the most common driving infraction for Mississippi drivers is speeding. While speeding causes risk, it’s not as bad as having an at-fault accident on your record.

3. Nevada

Out of 2 million drivers in Nevada, approximately 84% of them have clean driving records. Compared to the average American driver, Nevada drivers have a 7% higher chance of having no prior driving infractions. However, the most common infraction for drivers in Nevada is an at-fault accident, and Nevada has some of the most expensive auto insurance in the United States.

2. New York

New York has an incredible 12 million licensed drivers, and about 85% of them have clean driving records. However, the most common driving violation for New York drivers is an at-fault accident.

1. Michigan

Out of 7 million drivers in Michigan, approximately 86% of them have clean driving records. In addition, the most common violation for Michigan drivers is speeding. However, Michigan is known for having the highest auto insurance rates, possibly due to a high number of uninsured drivers.

We’ve come to the end of our list of best and worst drivers by state. Therefore, it’s time for us to mention that auto insurance is essential to making sure you’re protected no matter where you live. Even if you live in one of the states with the best drivers, each state has a minimum auto insurance requirement that you must meet to drive legally.

In addition, there’s no telling when you could encounter a bad driver, bad road conditions, or a driver without insurance. After learning about the best and worst drivers by state, enter your ZIP code into our free quote comparison tool below to find an auto insurance company near you.

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