Route 163
Route 163 in downtown San Diego. Photo by Chris Stone

San Diego is home to the worst speeders in the country — at least in a GasBuddy survey of data from 30 major metropolitan areas.

According to a report released Tuesday, San Diego drivers have 62 percent more speeding incidents than average U.S. drivers.

Orlando was tied with Detroit for second on the speeding list with 56.6 percent more lead-foot drivers than average.

GasBuddy, a smartphone app company based in Boston, also pinpointed the major U.S. cities with the most aggressive drivers, “causing them to pay more for gasoline by making more frequent trips to the pump.”

Honking, squeaking brakes and bumper-to-bumper traffic are common problems in many of America’s congested cities, GasBuddy said.

“Frustrated drivers can get agitated quickly, and their aggressive driving habits like speeding, rapid acceleration and braking can lower gas mileage by as much as 40 percent, costing them as much as $477 per year in additional fuel consumption,” said a summary of the report.

Where does GasBuddy find the most aggressive drivers?

Los Angeles, the survey said.

One the most aggressive ranking, San Diego was sixth. Ahead of America’s Finest City were Philadelphia, Sacramento, Atlanta and San Francisco.

GasBuddy says it compiled data from its Drives feature in the GasBuddy app, examining the top 30 metropolitan areas by population as defined by the U.S. Census Bureau from Nov. 2018 – Feb. 2019, noting the frequency of an aggressive event while driving, whether it be speeding, hard braking or accelerating.

Los Angeles consistently tops the list of having some of the most expensive gas prices in the nation, currently averaging $3.35 per gallon.

Combined with traffic and congestion, the GasBuddy Aggressive Driving study says the way Los Angeles motorists are driving is contributing to a larger gasoline budget.

“And it doesn’t stop with Los Angeles: Four of the top 10 cities with the most aggressive drivers are in California, including Sacramento, San Francisco and San Diego,” said a news release.

Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy, said: “Frustration while driving in densely populated cities with high levels of congestion leads motorists to drive more aggressively and with more urgency. Interestingly, these are areas that typically see some of the highest gas prices in their respective states.”

With drivers in Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Sacramento and Atlanta being 20 percent more aggressive than the average driver in America, DeHaan said, “it’s particularly important for commuters and rideshare drivers in these areas to work on shedding their lead foot and relax more to keep money from flying out the window each time they hit the road.”

Seven of the top 10 cities with the most aggressive drivers from this year’s study are within the top 10 states with the most aggressive drivers, including California, Georgia, Texas and Florida.

Additional findings include:

  • Frustrating Fridays: Motorists are 1.2x more likely to encounter aggressive driving on Friday than on Wednesday. The most aggressive day on the road is Friday, with 14 percent more aggressive driving events occurring compared to the average across the United States.
  • The least aggressive day on the road is Wednesday, with 6 percent fewer aggressive driving events occurring compared to the average across the United States.
  • Wearing Out the Brakes (All Week): The most frequent aggressive driving habit on weekdays is hard braking, followed by rapid acceleration and speeding. On weekends, the most frequent aggressive driving habit continues to be hard braking, followed by speeding and rapid acceleration.

Complete city rankings can be found here.

Aggressive driving may not equate to worst driving, however.

Last August, Forbes noted an Allstate Insurance report that listed the 10 U.S. cities with the most accident-prone drivers:

  • Baltimore: 3.8 years between accidents
    • Boston: 3.9 years between accidents
    • Washington: 3.9 years between accidents
    • Worcester, MA: 4.4 years between accidents
    • Glendale: 5.1 years between accidents
    • Springfield, MA: 5.3 years between accidents
    • Los Angeles: 5.5 years between accidents
    • Providence, RI: 5.5 years between accidents
    • Alexandria, VA: 5.7 years between accidents
    • Philadelphia: 5.9 years between accidents
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