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Boston has worst drivers of any big U.S. city: Allstate report

(Reuters) - New York may have its aggressive, horn-honking drivers but it is a bastion of tranquility and safety compared to Boston, home to the worst drivers of any U.S. big city, according to an insurance industry report.

"A Boston driver, on average, will get into a collision every 4.4 years," Kari Mather, a spokeswoman for insurer Allstate Corp, said on Tuesday.

The company's annual report, titled "Allstate America's Best Drivers Report," is based on client collision damage data in 2011 and 2012.

It found Boston ranked dead last among cities with more than 1 million residents in their metropolitan area. Next was Washington.

The large U.S. city that boasts the best drivers is Phoenix, where a driver, on average, will get into a collision every 9.5 years, Mather said. San Diego and Chicago ranked second and third among big cities.

The analysis was weighted to consider factors such as population density and precipitation, Mather said.

Allstate offers automobile insurance to drivers, who are required in most states to carry coverage for their vehicles in case of an accident.

Mather said the report's finding are not used to calculate driver costs, but to raise awareness.

"It's more about a dialogue of encouraging drivers to be safer on the road. It's a wakeup call to them," she said.

The full report included 200 cities. Boston ranked 199th, ahead of only Worcester, Massachusetts, an industrial city of 181,000 people 40 miles to the west.

Among other large cities, Chicago ranked 139th, New York City 155th, Houston 158th, Los Angeles 188th, San Francisco 190th, Philadelphia 192nd and Washington 198th.

(Reporting by Barbara Goldberg in New York; Editing by Mohammad Zargham)

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