New research from the UK’s leading price comparison site, MoneySuperMarket, reveals that the majority of Brits (71 per cent) believe that other road users could do more to improve their road safety.
With over 1,700 fatalities on the road from September 2016 to September 2017 alone, MoneySuperMarket reveals how smarter driving technology could help cut down costs and improve driver safety.
Young drivers are often hit with the highest insurance premiums, as insurers deem this demographic as ‘high risk’. Nearly half of Brits (44 per cent) consider younger drivers to be the least safe drivers, but in reality, the study found that over half of 18 – 24 year olds (52 per cent) had not had any car accidents and nearly half (47 per cent) passed their driving test on the first try, compared to just 34 per cent of 25-34 year olds.
In addition, while the majority of Brits are in agreement that safety on the road could be improved, 64 per cent of the public would not fit their car with a telematics device - despite these being designed to increase road safety and reduce the price of car insurance. Young drivers, for example, could be safer on the roads and save up to £363 by including a telematics device in their cars.
On average, only 13 per cent of Brits are using smarter driving technology on the roads. Although there are devices such as reverse cameras on the market to help reduce the amount of accidents, injuries and exterior damage caused while parking or pulling out, only 17 per cent of Brits use this technology.
Examples of the available safer driving technologies include:
• Dash cam - The most common device among drivers due to cost and ease of use, dash cams provide a 24-hour recording of the front view of your car. This can be invaluable for insurance claims purposes, as well as encouraging the driver to take greater care in their driving.
• Collision alerts - Usually a part of the vehicle sensor system or rear-view camera, collision alerts (sometimes referred to as automatic emergency braking) function as a prevention device. In the event of a potential collision, this autonomous system can intervene by slowing or even stopping the car.
• Black box - Telematics, more commonly known as the black box, is a system that monitors how an individual drives, with data sent to the insurance provider. The idea is that driving responsibly is rewarded with lower insurance premiums.
Kevin Pratt, consumer affairs expert at MoneySuperMarket, commented: “Technology is revolutionising the way we drive, and it is having an increasingly noticeable impact on insurance premiums. In addition to telematics policies, which reward safe drivers with lower premiums, insurers are beginning to take safety features such as automatic braking into account when setting their prices.
“The number of fatalities on UK roads is still tragically high at around 1,700 a year, but it has fallen from highs approaching 8,000 a year in the 1960s. Much of this reduction can be attributed to safer cars, which are designed and built to protect both the occupants and pedestrians.
“Over the coming years, we’ll see a growing proportion of autonomous vehicles on the roads, and it will be fascinating to see how this affects car insurance prices. It’s believed that up to 90 per cent of accidents are caused by human error, so if human error can be reduced or even eliminated, there will inevitably be a benign impact on premiums.
“However, safe drivers can bring down their premiums almost straight away. Every year you are claim-free, you will earn a no claims bonus, which, after five years, could knock 70 per cent or more off the cost of your car insurance.”
Visit MoneySuperMarket for more information about the costs of smarter driving technology and how it can improve driver safety on the UK’s roads.