A motorist has not been banned from driving despite having 39 penalty points on their license – the most in Great Britain.
The driver, from Swindon, is one of more than 600 in the South West who have not been handed a motoring ban despite racking up more than the allowed 12 points.
A court usually rules that a driver should be temporarily banned if they rack up a dozen points – unless they can prove it would cause exceptional hardship.
The shocking statistics, which were released under the Freedom of Information Act, were today slammed by safety campaigners as ”completely unacceptable”.
Cath Harley, from the road safety charity Brake, called for all drivers with more than 12 points on their license to be banned from driving.
She said: ”It’s completely unacceptable that people are clocking up to 39 points on their licence.
”Again 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.”
In total, 638 drivers in Bristol, Dorset, Wiltshire, Somerset and Gloucestershire have 12 or more points on their licence, as of March 24.
Courts can exercise discretion and not disqualify drivers in a ”small percentage of cases where the driver has accumulated 12 or more penalty points”.
If a court decides not to ban the motorist and they commit further driving offences, they cannot claim the same ”exceptional circumstances” again.
Elliot Griffiths, from the Magistrates’ Association, admitted there was ”something wrong” with a motorist having 39 points on their license.
He said: ”I accept that something appears to be wrong with [the figures in the Swindon case] and they need to be looked at.
”I can’t even conceive how somebody can have 20, 30, 40 points and not be disqualified.
”I can’t work it out. I’d be very interested to see how it happened.”