Over the last couple of weeks, car incidents have risen by 35 per cent, perhaps in large part because so many drivers are out of practice because of having been at home so much during lockdown.
Figures from Co-op Insurance show that 16 per cent of people say they have been driving more in the last month, with 59 per cent saying that they think driving is safer than using public transport at the moment. Some 12 per cent say they’ve got in their cars because they don’t want to wear face coverings on public transport.
In addition, it was found that collisions with cyclists have doubled in the last couple of weeks, so the insurer is advising everyone on the road to take extra care when it comes to getting back behind the wheel once again.
“Prior to lockdown, many motorists across the country drove regularly, whether that be to commute, to see friends or family or take day trips. With concerns about public transport and official advice to consider all other forms of transport, such as driving, cycling or walking, it’s clear that even more people are taking to the roads,” head of motor insurance at Co-op Nick Ansley said.
Director of campaigns at Brake Joshua Harris made further comments, saying that this rise in incidents may feel as though it’s inevitable but it shouldn’t and it is a worry, particularly because more people are biking on the roads at the moment, some of them for the first time ever.
As such, he urged people to only get in their cars and drive if the journey is absolutely essential and even then, they should be especially vigilant for cyclists and pedestrians.
Further research from Co-op, published back in May, found that speeding alerts sent out to young driver policyholders rose by 15 per cent since lockdown was initiated. Young drivers have a casualty rate that is three times higher than all other motorists in England.
Mr Harris commented at the time, saying that speeding is both dangerous and selfish, increasing the risks of serious accidents, as well as blighting local communities. He called on drivers of all ages to think about how devastating a crash could be and make sure that they keep well within legal speed limits whenever they’re on the roads.
As well as posing serious risks to themselves, others on the road and local communities, receiving speeding alerts could mean young drivers don’t graduate from the black box, which can help reduce insurance premiums. It’s also possible that insurance policies could be cancelled if people drive at dangerous speeds on a regular basis.
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