Britain’s most distracting landmarks revealed

Buckingham Palace causes 34 accidents a year

Do you wave to the Royals when driving past Buckingham Palace? Or pause to wonder at Stonehenge when passing through Wiltshire?

Accident data has revealed the 10 famous British sights that cause the biggest distractions for passing motorists.

Department for Transport crash data for 2013-2018, reviewed around 50 of the UK’s most iconic roadside attractions, to find where tourists are most likely to put their safety at risk taking in the sights. 

The most distracting landmark in Britain is…

The research, compiled by Select Car Leasing, found Buckingham Palace to be the most distracting for passing drivers, with over 200 accident recorded on surrounding roads over the six-year period.

Two other London-based landmarks, the Houses of Parliament and St Paul’s Cathedral, also make the list.

However, it’s Brighton Pier that takes a surprising second spot, with 124 crashes on roads overlooking the coastal attraction.

Top 10 most dangerous landmarks

  1. Buckingham Palace, London: 203 accidents
  2. Brighton Pier, Brighton: 124 accidents
  3. The Scott Monument, Edinburgh: 89 accidents
  4. Houses of Parliament, London: 79 accidents
  5. Stonehenge, Wiltshire: 60 accidents
  6. Angel of The North, Gateshead: 53 accidents
  7. Humber Bridge, East Yorkshire: 49 accidents
  8. St. Paul’s Cathedral, London: 40 accidents
  9. Blackpool Tower, Blackpool: 30 accidents
  10. Windsor Castle, Berkshire: 26 accidents

The dangers of roadside attractions

To highlight the dangers of roadside attractions, Select Car Leasing conducted a case study comparing crash statistics surrounding Tottenham Hotspur’s new football stadium in North London.

The study compared the number of incidents recorded around the site before and after construction began.

In the years 2013 and 2014, prior to construction, a total of 17 accidents were recorded, averaging 8.5 incidents per year.

However, data recorded after construction began reveals a sharp increase in accidents. Between 2015 and 2018, a total of 47 accidents were recorded, marking a 37% rise.

Select Car Leasing has warned motorists to be wary of other drivers when passing landmarks, as they may be less predictable if distracted.

A spokesman said: “Drivers may be tempted to slow down to view the passing monument or attractions. It’s also important that your own eyes aren’t drawn from the road towards the landmarks, or it might be you who causes the accident.”

Does your mind wander behind the wheel? These are the top 10 driving distractions putting drivers at risk.

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