May worst month for collisions warns RACV

11 May 2016

 

Most vehicle collisions last year happened in May, prompting RACV to issue a caution to motorists to take particular care as days shorten and autumn prepares to give way to winter.

RACV General Manager Insurance, Paul Northey explained that RACV Insurance data indicates that the high number of collisions in May is a trend that has been developing over the past five years.

During that period, nine per cent of car collision insurance claims resulted from incidents in the last month of autumn.

“Friday is the day when the highest number of collisions occur, with most happening between noon and 6pm,” Mr Northey said.

On average, RACV received 201 collision claims each day in 2015. The cost of claims increased 3.9 per cent compared to the previous year and totalled $368.5 million.

Mr Northey noted that in close to a third of all collisions, another party was at fault.

“It is important to anticipate the actions of other motorists and be prepared for any unexpected situations,” he said.

Animals can also surprise motorists, accounting for seven per cent of collisions.

For the fifth consecutive year, Melbourne City Council area recorded the highest number of collisions, despite a significant decline in incidents each year since 2012. Motorists lodged 4,885 claims relating to collisions in Melbourne, ahead of Brimbank with 4,163.

Of Victoria’s 78 local government areas, 13 recorded fewer than 100 collisions, with only a single insurance claim resulting from accidents in Pyrenees Shire.

Mr Northey said uninsured motorists potentially faced costly repairs to their vehicle and liability for any damage caused to other vehicles or property in the event of an accident.

“The average cost of collision claims last year was close to $5000, with eleven per cent of claims for total loss and 64 per cent for repairs,” he said.

“In addition to taking precautions behind the wheel, it’s a good idea for motorists to take out comprehensive insurance cover.”

RACV Car Insurance is issued by Insurance Manufacturers of Australia Pty Limited ABN 93 004 208 084 AFS Licence No. 227678. Please consider the Product Disclosure Statement before buying. For a copy call 13 RACV (13 7228).

RACV collision insurance claims – Top 25 municipalities (Source: RACV)

Municipality

2014

2015

Change (%)

Melbourne

4,902

4,885

-0.4%

Brimbank

4,161

4,163

+0.1%

Monash

3,547

3,482

-1.8%

Boroondara

3,600

3,477

-3.4%

Casey

3,138

3,217

+2.5%

Manningham

2,980

3,034

+1.8%

Banyule

2,754

2,701

-1.9%

Greater Geelong

2,431

2,357

-3.0%

Greater Dandenong

2,283

2,219

-2.8%

Darebin

2,171

2,145

-1.2%

Glen Eira

2,031

1,999

-1.6%

Knox

1,945

1,897

-2.4%

Bayside

1,772

1,765

-0.4%

Whitehorse

1,732

1,681

-2.9%

Hume

1,573

1,653

+5.1%

Whittlesea

1,380

1,453

+5.3%

Mornington Peninsula

1,439

1,373

-4.6%

Yarra

1,367

1,371

+0.3%

Frankston

1,282

1,310

+2.2%

Yarra Ranges

1,346

1,275

-5.3%

Port Phillip

1,273

1,252

-1.7%

Kingston

1,187

1,177

-0.8%

Ballarat

1,163

1,150

-1.1%

Moreland

1,148

1,098

-4.4%

Greater Bendigo

1,133 

1,083

-4.4%

 

Ten tips for avoiding a collision

  1. Drive at a safe speed for the conditions.
  2. Always maintain a two-second gap from the vehicle ahead, no matter what speed you are travelling. When it is raining or on a foggy night, the gap should be doubled to four seconds.
  3. When you stop behind another vehicle in a line of traffic, always ensure you are able to clearly see the bottom of the vehicle's rear tyres. This ensures you are not too close to the other vehicle. As you commence to move your two-second gap will already be in place.
  4. Keep to the left at all times unless overtaking. The right hand lane is for overtaking, or turning right.
  5. Where practical, use your indicators for at least 30 metres before beginning to turn or change lanes, to let other road users what you will do.
  6. Expect the unexpected and be aware that we all make mistakes sometimes. The other driver may forget to indicate, or to look to see if you are nearby. If you have anticipated that this may happen, it will not be a surprise.
  7. Be aware of when your concentration may be at a low level and be especially careful.
  8. We should drive as a team, not as individuals; be prepared to let the other driver in, rather than blocking them out.
  9. When you stop at lights or at a stop sign, your car should be behind the thick stop line. At some intersections, if you stop over the stop line and a truck or bus turns into the street that you are leaving, it could collide with your vehicle.
  10. Overtaking is probably one of the most dangerous manoeuvres a driver can perform, especially on a two-way carriageway. Quite often the vehicle you overtake is travelling only slightly slower than you are. Make sure that you have enough room to go well past the overtaken vehicle before you move back to the left. Don't cut them off.
Written by Liselotte Geary, RACV Public Affairs on (03) 9790 2717
May 11, 2016