These 20 Cities Have the Most Aggressive Drivers (2021)

Drivers in these cities are the worst offenders when it comes to the most egregious (and illegal) forms of aggressive behavior on the roads.

From speeding or tailgating to running red lights, aggressive driving contributes significantly to motor vehicle crashes and fatalities — which, unfortunately, have risen 8 percent over the past year. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), this rise in fatalities is closer to 24 percent when taking total miles driven into account, given that Americans drove less overall in 2020.

It’s a sad reality that aggressive driving behavior has become ubiquitous across the United States. A national survey by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety found that nearly 80 percent of drivers reported at least one incidence of aggression, anger, or road rage towards another driver over a one-year period. Not only do aggressive drivers ruin the mood of an otherwise pleasant drive, but they endanger themselves and everyone around them. Aggressive drivers can be found from coast to coast, but the degree to which drivers engage in aggressive behavior varies considerably by city. 

New York City may be the first to come to mind when considering where the most aggressive drivers live, but Insurify’s findings challenge this stereotype. The most aggressive drivers do not, in fact, all live in the Big Apple. In this study, the data science team at Insurify sought to identify the cities with the greatest share of drivers that engage in the most dangerous (and illegal) aggressive driving behavior.

Heat Map displaying the top 20 cities with the greatest proportion of aggressive drivers

Insights

  • National average. Across all cities in the United States, 12.22 percent of drivers have received one or more citations for driving infractions categorized as “aggressive.”
  • Regional patterns. Among the top twenty cities, only nine different states are represented. Most of the cities with the most aggressive drivers are clustered in a few select states: five of the top twenty cities are located in Ohio, followed by four in Virginia, three in Washington, and two each in Iowa and Wisconsin. 
  • The most common aggressive driving offenses. The most common aggressive driving offense is speeding, followed by failure to stop at a red light and failure to stop at a stop sign.
  • Cities with the nicest drivers. On the other side of the spectrum are the cities with the niced drivers. The top three cities with the lowest proportion of aggressive drivers are Rosemead, California; Hialeah, Florida; and New Britain, Connecticut. Each of these cities is home to only 4.21, 4.64, and 5.01 percent of drivers who have received a citation for one or more aggressive driving behaviors.
  • More law enforcement, more aggressive driving citations? The data tells a different story. Referring to police officer density data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, the data science team at Insurify calculated the statistical relationship in each city between the density of police officers and the citation rates for aggressive driving behavior. They found that a higher proportion of police officers relative to the population does not correspond with a higher citation rate for these driving offenses, Pearson’s r = 0.08.

Methodology

The data science team at Insurify, an auto insurance comparison website, referred to its database of over 4 million insurance applications to determine the cities with the most aggressive drivers. 

In order to apply for car insurance, drivers disclose information such as their state and city of residence as well as their driving history, including accidents and moving violations. Insurify’s data scientists classified the following driving violations as the most extreme forms of aggressive driving behavior: speeding (exceeding the posted speed limit, driving too fast for conditions), failure to stop violations (failure to stop for a red light, school bus, or stop sign), failure to yield violations (failure to yield the right of way, failure to yield to a pedestrian), reckless driving, passing where prohibited, and tailgating.

Insurify’s data scientists calculated the proportion of drivers with one or more of these violations on their record for each city. The top twenty cities with the highest proportion of these drivers were ranked as the cities with the most aggressive drivers. In this study, cities were defined based on the United States Census Bureau’s classification of an “urbanized area,” an urban area with a population over 50,000. 


These 20 U.S. Cities Have the Most Aggressive Drivers

20. Shawnee, Kansas

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.22%

TRENDING CONTENT ON INSURIFY

Auto insurance comparison is the best way to secure the policy that most closely fits your coverage needs and budget.

Owning a car in the Bluegrass State can be costly, but that doesn’t mean your car insurance should break the bank. How to find cheap auto insurance Kentucky.

19. Auburn, Alabama

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.31%

18. Canton, Ohio

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.37%

TRENDING CONTENT ON INSURIFY

Living in the Beehive State? Take the sting out of your auto insurance costs and see where to find car insurance Utah drivers can trust.

Texans should look no further for cheap auto insurance Texas.

17. Madison, Wisconsin

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.41%

16. Loveland, Colorado

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.50%

TRENDING CONTENT ON INSURIFY

Living in the Golden State? Our experts weigh in on finding cheap auto insurance California drivers can count on.

Insurify’s one-stop comparison guide for car insurance quotes Michigan is just a click away.

15. Spokane, Washington

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.58%

14. Springfield, Ohio

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.60%

TRENDING CONTENT ON INSURIFY

Life just got a whole lot sunnier in the Sunshine State: everything you need to know about finding auto insurance Florida drivers can afford.

Finding cheap auto insurance in GA is easier than you’d expect, particularly when relying on car insurance comparison to locate the best rates.

13. Cleveland, Ohio

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.64%

12. Norfolk, Virginia

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.78%

11. Meridian, Ohio

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 18.94%

10. Lorain, Ohio

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 19.46%

9. West Des Moines, Iowa

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 19.52%

8. Elyria, Ohio

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 19.62%

7. Des Moines, Iowa

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 19.85%

6. Kenosha, Wisconsin

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 19.90%

5. Chesapeake, Virginia

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 20.15%

4. Yakima, Washington

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 20.21%

3. Suffolk, Virginia

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 20.52%

2. Lynchburg, Virginia

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 20.84%

1. Kennewick, Washington

  • Drivers cited for aggressive driving behavior: 21.39%

 

If you have any questions or comments about this article or would like to request the data, please contact insights@insurify.com.

Updated April 6, 2021

Insurify Insights

Insurify’s team of data scientists and content specialists presents Insurify Insights, a series of automotive, home, and health studies focusing on the topics that impact us all. Through expert analysis of over 4 million car insurance applications and an array of top data sources, the Insurify Insights team produces new data-driven articles, trend analyses, regional superlatives, and national rankings every week. See Insurify Insights as featured in Forbes, Fox News, USA Today, NPR, and more.