Some states dole out more tickets per capita than others, and DriverSide has worked up a list of the top 10 speediest states according to traffic citations. Of course, a lot goes into these statistics besides how fast residents are driving, including the number of law enforcement officers on the road and the population of each individual state. Do drivers up north really cruise at higher speeds than their southern counterparts? Take a look at our list of speediest states to find out for yourself.
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Population: 6.4 million
Massachusetts's 6,416,505 residents kept law enforcement busy with 337,103 tickets last year. Hey, they have to pay for that great education and health care system somehow. Why not with speedy dollars?
The tiny state of Delaware can hold its own in the title fight for quick drivers. The first state to ratify the United States Constitution is also the ninth speediest state in the country. With a population of just 830,364, Delaware hit 44,551 tickets last year. That's 5.4 percent of the population.
8. South Carolina
Population: 4.19 million
Continuing along the East Coast, South Carolina also has its own share of speedy drivers. The state may be famous for its sandy beaches and a laid-back attitude, but its 4,198,068 citizens racked up 228,363 tickets in 2009. Of course, some of those may be attributed to out-of-state visitors headed to the coast in a hurry. Riiiight.
7. New Mexico
Population: 1.9 million
Holding down the Southwest, New Mexico lays claim to the seventh spot on our list. With the area's gorgeous scenery and rich history, it's hard to see why anyone would want to fly through it. (How about the vast expanses of open road and unpopulated space? —Ed.) That hasn't stopped the state's 1,903,289 residents from racking up 117,303 speeding violations –- an impressive number considering the 75-mph speed limit on most New Mexico interstates.
Population: 5.5 million
You can add speeding alongside football and crab cakes to the list of things that Maryland does well. The state's 5,558,058 citizens carry a ticket load of 349,921, or about 6.3 percent of the population. That figure is roughly five times the number of people who can fit in the Baltimore Ravens' home stadium.
Population: 2.9 million
Proving there's nothing slow about the South, Mississippi takes the number five slot. The state is home to over 2,902,966 residents, and there are 197,434 tickets on record for 2009. At 6.8 percent of the population, that's a big figure for a state known more for taking it easy on the front porch than hauling down the interstate.
4. North Dakota
Things must have really picked up since the high plains drifter made his way through these parts. North Dakota boasts a population of around 634,366, and the state's law enforcement was happy to hand out 45,510 tickets in '09. That number represents 7.2 percent of the state's population, or just shy of the total number of people in Bismarck.
Next up is Vermont. Despite only having 631,394 residents to watch over, Vermont police have doled out 52,269 traffic violations. That makes up 8.4 percent of the population. You know what they say — once Vermont drivers get that syrup in them, they get all antsy.
Commuters looking to get to their home where the buffalo roam have nabbed a serious number of infractions. At only 506,529 people, there are 46,366 citations on the book right now, or around 9.2 percent of Wyoming's population. What's the rush?
1. Washington, D.C.
It's not really a state per se, but the District of Columbia takes the crown as the location with the most citations per capita. The capital of our nation boasts an astounding 553,523 residents with 434,301 tickets. That means a full 78.5 percent of the population has at least one traffic violation to their name! So much for law-abiding citizens in the land of law and order.