One in four car crashes are rear-bumper bangsCar insurance fraud a factor in the rise of claims

14 May 2011

car insurance premiums

Honest motorists will be hit by higher car insurance premiums

The number of rear-bumper crashes has risen 9% over the last full year resulting in higher premiums for motorists. They now account for a quarter of all car insurance claims.

New research has shown that 405,000 crashes were caused by motorists driving into the back of policyholders' cars in 2010, costing insurers around £1.9 billion in whiplash claims alone. 

These costs are passed on to drivers in the form of higher premiums, making it even more important for motorists to shop around for the best car insurance policies.  

Congestion adds to car insurance claims

Admiral Insurance, which conducted the research behind the findings, put the rise in claims down to two main factors: road congestion and fraud. With more than 33 million cars on the road, slow moving traffic can lead some drivers to lose concentration and drive too close to the car in front. 

Driving too fast and tailgating on motorways are also contributing factors. 

Car insurance fraud

According to Admiral managing director Sue Longthorn there has been a rise in the number of incidents of drivers deliberately and unexpectedly slamming on their brakes causing the motorist behind to drive into their vehicle. She said: There are unscrupulous drivers out there causing slam on accidents so it's important to keep your distance from cars in front.'    

Insurance fraud costs the insurance industry £3 billion a year, which is also passed on in the form of increased car insurance premiums and adds an estimated £44 to annual policies.

For more information, see the Which? Recommended Provider guide for car insurance. 

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