Glendale ranks near bottom on best drivers list, but officials dispute report

Glendale has once again ranked near the bottom of a list of cities in the United States with the best drivers.

Allstate Insurance released its annual America’s Best Drivers Report, listing the top 200 cities across the country, and Glendale came in at 196 — a drop from last year’s position at 195. The insurance company ranks the cities according to the likelihood its customers will get into a traffic collision and how many years will go by before they get into another.

Glendale drivers insured by Allstate were found to be 95.2% more likely to get into a collision compared to the national average and tend to get into one every 5.1 years.

Los Angeles was also ranked low by the insurance company, coming in at 194. Drivers in L.A. get into collisions every 5.5 years on average and are 81.4% more likely to get into one.

The city with the best drivers can be found in Brownsville, Texas, according to the report, where drivers are 23.6% less likely than the national average to be involved in a collision, and the average between incidents is 13.6 years.

Baltimore came in at the bottom of the list, with its drivers being 163.2% more likely to be involved in a collision, lasting 3.8 years between incidents on average.

Despite the report listing the best drivers in the country, some Glendale officials take issue with Allstate’s findings.

Sgt. Dan Suttles, a spokesman for the Glendale Police Department, said the insurance company’s report has a narrow focus, taking statistics only from its customers and only listing cities in the country with a population greater than 50,000.

In California alone, there are approximately 600 cities, according to Suttles.

“The report from Allstate, we look at that and it’s an interesting thing to look at, but it’s not really scientific,” he said. “It’s just one company and their participants.”

He points to collision rankings provided by the California Office of Traffic Safety as being more credible. The figures the Office of Traffic Safety uses are drawn from reports provided by several government agencies including the California Highway Patrol, state Department of Transportation and state Department of Justice — not from insurance claims.

In the latest collision figures, the Office of Traffic Safety grouped Glendale with 56 other cities in California with populations between 100,001 and 250,000.

For overall collisions, the city ranked 44th out of 57.

However, the rankings are the opposite of Allstate’s — the higher a city ranks, the worse its drivers are.

One area where Glendale ranked high on the Office of Traffic Safety list was collisions involving pedestrians.

Glendale ranked second out of 57 cities for overall pedestrian-involved collisions and eighth out of 57 cities for collisions involving pedestrians younger than 15.

For collisions with pedestrians 65 and older, Glendale ranked first.

Suttles said the city and police department have been working to curb pedestrian-involved collisions, particularly those involving older adults.

Some of the efforts include going to adult-care facilities in order to educate seniors about traffic laws and signs, pedestrian-focused traffic enforcement operations and placing more crosswalks in Glendale.

Twitter: @Andy_Truc