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High number of new drivers in car accidents

Young driver

One in five drivers are involved in a car accident during their first year of motoring, according to a new survey.

The research, conducted by GAP insurance brokers ALA, found out how many accidents and offences are caused by drivers in their first 12 months on the road.

Between April 2016 and March 2017, an estimated 175,000 new drivers had an accident within a year of passing their test.

One in 10 of these drivers incurred a cost of more £1,000 through damages, while 30% of these accidents cost £400 or more in damages.

The Freedom of Information (FOI) data also revealed that 3,194 drivers were disqualified in their first 12 months, and 18,038 received points on their licence in the same timeframe.

New drivers in Coventry and Chelmsford were involved in the most accidents, whereas drivers in Leeds were guilty of the highest number of offences.

It is the stereotypical ‘boy racers’ that appear to be racking up the most points – males committed 77% of offences that resulted in points, and out of the new drivers who were disqualified from driving, 87% were male.

Males also tend to be involved in more accidents than females, with one in four admitting to this compared to one in five for females.

However, females incur larger expenses in these incidents, with 14% admitting to causing damages of £1,000 or more, as opposed to just 6% of males.

The data was also broken down to city level, revealing that the top three cities reporting the highest number of accidents involving new drivers were Coventry, Chelmsford, and Aberdeen. New drivers from Aberystwyth, Gloucester, Southampton and Swansea, however, were involved in the fewest.

“With the cost of insurance premiums constantly rising for younger drivers, we thought it would be interesting to find out how many new drivers are involved in road accidents and how many are committing offences in their first 12 months on the roads,” said Simon England of ALA.

“We were surprised to find that one in five new drivers are involved in at least one accident within the first 12 months, suggesting that experience really does count when you are out on the road.

“Damages to cars can be very expensive, especially on newer models, so it doesn’t take much for these damages to add up. Insurance for young drivers is already very expensive so the last thing you need is a claim on your policy which will bump this up even more.”

About Gareth Herincx

Gareth is a versatile journalist, copywriter and digital editor who's worked across the media in newspapers, magazines, TV, teletext, radio and online. After long stints at the BBC, GMTV and ITV, he now specialises in motoring.

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