Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. Photo: Google Maps.

New York drivers can officially claim they’re the best drivers in the country.

A new study by law firm Friend, Levinson and Turner ranked New Yorkers at the top of the list of best drivers in the U.S., after calculating each state’s average ranking across four metrics to create a final score from 0-100.

The metrics were: total accident fatalities per 100,000; DUI arrests per 100,000; percentage of uninsured drivers; keyword research using data from a Google search trends analysis of over 500 terms related to “get out of a ticket,” “car accident lawyer,” and “DUI lawyer”; and population of citizens above driving age in every state.

New York came in with an average ranking of 47.3, the highest in the study. In addition to having the second-lowest fatality rate in the country (6 per 100,000), New Yorkers have extremely low rates of DUI-related arrests (156) and a majority of drivers are insured (84%), the study found.

Coming in closely behind New York was Massachusetts, with an average ranking of 47 thanks to its low DUI and crash fatality rates. Taking the third place spot was Pennsylvania, where 83% of drivers are insured.

At the other end of the spectrum was New Mexico.

According to the study, the state is home to the worst drivers in America, with an average ranking of 6 across the board. The low score was due to the state’s unusually high number of accident fatalities (25 per 100,000) and the percent of uninsured drivers (21%).

New Mexico was followed closely by Alabama and Arkansas, whose drivers tied for the second- and third-worst in the nation. While Alabama had the lowest number of DUI arrests (1 per 100,000), it had one of the highest fatality rates (23 per 100,000) as well as a high number of uninsured drivers (21%).

Likewise, Arkansas had high rates of fatality (21 per 100,000) and uninsured drivers (17%).

Rounding out the top five states with the worst drivers was Wyoming at number four and Montana at number five.

According to the study, almost half of the top ten states with the worst drivers were in the South: Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and South Carolina. Western states — New Mexico, Wyoming, and Montana — accounted for one-third of the ten worst. Meanwhile, the best drivers came from the northeast, particularly New York,  Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New Jersey and Connecticut.

Friend, Levinson & Turner are Chicago-based car accident lawyers and injury attorneys. You can find more about the study here.

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  1. I’m not sure lawyers from that firm even drive in NY and Mass…drivers in those big cities of NYC and Boston are THE worst. I’ve driven a lot in both…ugh! Thus I wouldn’t shower NYers and Bostonians with flowers — ever!

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