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As the clocks go back, car accidents increase.  Coincidence?

Each year there is an average 11 per cent increase in car insurance claims immediately following the clock change according to claims statistics by car insurance company Zurich Connect.

The sharp rise in claims has been registered by the company over the past three wintertime clock changes when comparing the two weeks preceding and two weeks following the end of British Summer Time.

And now, as the clocks go back an hour in the early hours of Sunday morning (October 25) Zurich Connect is warning drivers to take extra care on the roads next week.

Said Mike Quinton from Zurich Connect:  “Daylight saving has become a dark week on Britain’s roads as accidents shoot up.

“It’s possible that drivers get used to driving their regular routes in broad daylight, then find it hard to adjust to suddenly doing the same journey at the same time, but in the dark. Couple this with the fact that autumnal weather is often wet and windy, and the risk of having an accident on the road is significantly increased.”

Zurich Connects Top three considerations for safe driving are:

1) Is your car ready?
- Keep your windows clean: In poor weather conditions and at night, any smears or marks on your windows will increase the glare from oncoming headlights, reducing visibility. Looking through a smeared windscreen at night is very tiring.
- Keep lights clean: This will help you to see the road ahead and, equally importantly, help other road users to see you.
- Regularly check your tyres:  Ensure the tyre pressure for your car follows manufacturer guidelines. Incorrectly inflated tyres will increase your stopping distance and adversely affect the handling characteristics of your vehicle, especially on wet roads.  Also ensure that your tyres have plenty of tread left on them.
- Top up your washer fluid: Ensure that your windscreen washer bottle is kept topped up and that you use a screen wash / water mixture to ensure that this does not freeze in cold weather.

2) Are you ready?
- Have you thought about the different conditions on the roads? Not just what it will be like for you but for other motorists too. Have you considered about what it will be like driving next to a large truck in windy conditions and the measures you may need to take to reduce any problems?
- Always remember the 4-second rule: Travelling at least four seconds from the vehicle in front, and allow even greater distances if the road is wet or you think it might be icy.
- Be prepared: Is your mobile phone fully charged. Keep a blanket, bottle of water, some chocolate or similar, and a torch in the boot in case of emergencies.
- Take regular breaks.

3) Is your journey necessary?
- Check the travel news and weather forecasts and really consider if you do need to travel.
- If you have started a journey and the weather conditions deteriorate, consider stopping or turning back.
- Follow the advice of the emergency services.

- ends -

For more information or interviews (ISDN is available) with spokesman Keith Lewis, please contact Launch Group:

Katrina Brady   020 7758 3933  katrinab@launchgroup.co.uk
Chris Seymour   020 7758 3626  chriss@launchgroup.co.uk
Yasamin Ahooie  020 7758 3917  yasamina@launchgroup.co.uk

NOTES TO EDITORS:

Zurich Connect

Zurich Connect offers a range of quality, competitively priced home and motor insurance products. For more information about Zurich Connect or to get a quote please visit www.zurich-connect.co.uk  or call 0800 015 9283.

Zurich Connect is the European direct insurance brand from the Zurich Financial Services Group and is available in Austria, Germany, Italy, Spain, Switzerland and the UK and provides home, motor, and in some countries, personal liability insurance direct to consumers via the internet or over the phone.

 In the UK, Zurich Connect is underwritten by Zurich Insurance plc which is part of the Zurich Group.  Zurich Group is an insurance-based financial services provider with a global network of subsidiaries and offices in North America and Europe as well as in Asia Pacific, Latin America and other markets. Founded in 1872, the Group is headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland. It employs approximately 60,000 people serving customers in more than 170 countries.

 
 

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Zurich Insurance plc, a public limited company incorporated in Ireland. Registration No. 13460.Registered Office: Zurich House, Ballsbridge Park, Dublin 4, Ireland. UK Branch registered in England and Wales Registration No. BR7985. UK Branch Head Office: The Zurich Centre, 3000 Parkway, Whiteley, Fareham, Hampshire PO15 7JZ. Zurich Insurance plc is authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland and subject to limited regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority. Details about the extent of our regulation by the Financial Conduct Authority are available from us on request. These details can be checked on the FCA’s Financial Services Register via their website www.fca.org.uk or by contacting them on 0800 111 6768. Our FCA Firm Reference Number is 203093.

Zurich Assurance Ltd, authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. Registered in England and Wales under company number 02456671. Registered office: Tri Centre One, New Bridge Square, Swindon, SN1 1HN.