39 points and still driving

Updated: 


A Swindon motorist is driving around with 39 penalty points on their licence, a BBC Freedom of Information request has revealed today.

Safety campaigns have called the revelation 'completely unacceptable'.

The DVLA refused to give any more information about the driver, or what offences the points related to.

In theory a driver should be banned from the roads once they reach 12 points, but the courts have some leeway to allow motorists to keep their licence if there are extenuating circumstances.

If a driver can show to the court that a ban would cause 'exceptional hardship' to them or their family an exemption can be made, but further points within three years would mean a reassessment of the situation.

Elliot Griffiths of the Magistrates' Association said the situation clearly needed to be looked at, adding: "I can't even conceive how somebody can have 20, 30, 40 points and not be disqualified."

The FOI request also revealed that 638 drivers in the south west of England were driving with more than 12 points.

Brake spokeswoman Cath Harley expressed shock and said: "It's completely unacceptable that people are clocking up to 39 points on their licence."

"This is a risk to other road users and it's absolutely vital that people who exceed 12 points on their licence do in fact receive a driving ban," she added.