Moffat & Co Solicitors

Moffat & Co Solicitors
Accident Compensation Claim Solicitors Scotland
PO Box 28287
Edinburgh
Scotland
EH9 2WU
Telephone:
0131 662 6988
Fax:
0131 667 8175

MASS Motor Accident Solicitors Society

Moffat & Co Solicitors Over 25 years of experience at your service

Could better training reduce car accident claims on the road?

According to AA statistics, ‘driver error’ is a more significant factor in 90% of road traffic accidents than the condition of either the car or the road. While it is obviously better to be driving a safe car on safe roads, driver error can effectively discount both of these factors. It is perfectly possible to drive along a badly surfaced road in an old car safely and considerately. Equally, it is also possible to drive a top of the range car on a perfect road surface carelessly and without consideration. While roads are routinely improved and technology continues to make cars safer and more efficient, the one part of the equation that remains an unpredictable variable is the skill of the driver.

Unfortunately, the continued improvements in driving conditions and car safety have combined to create an unexpected effect. A report by the Association of Applied Psychology (AAP) suggests that ‘passive safety features’ such as seatbelts, airbags and crumple zones serve only to compound the problem. The report concludes that, “the safer a driver feels, the more blasé he becomes about having an accident.”

‘Active safety features’ such as hi-performance tyres and automatic braking systems come out no better. According to the AAP, these features only cause drivers to, “readjust their perceived margins of error.”

Incentive to improve driver skills

Whilst the finger of blame seems to be squarely pointing at the driver, there seems to be little incentive for a driver to improve his or her skills. Some motorists are motivated enough to seek out further training and become advanced drivers. However, the only material benefit is a slight reduction in insurance premiums for those who achieve this status. Yet, if we look a bit deeper, there are less obvious dividends to be reaped.

The Telegraph newspaper reported that “the cost of motor insurance premiums rose 38% last year – an increase of nearly £200.” Insurers argue that this hike is the result of poor motoring skills combined with an increase in the number of fraudulent claims. At least £44 is added to the cost of each insurance premium, according to the AA. Were people better equipped at the wheel, the average motorist could see a significant reduction in the cost of car insurance. However, the fight against insurance fraud is likely to be an ongoing concern.

Outside influences

There are, of course, factors that are beyond a driver’s control, but these are still outside influences that the driver could be prepared for. Winter brings with it an almost inevitable spike in the number of road traffic accidents each year. Certainly, advanced driver training would be of some benefit in these conditions but what might be more effective is an introduction of legislation that makes the use of winter tyres mandatory. Not only is this likely to reduce the number of accidents in poor weather, but might also reduce the number of absences from work that is attributed to bad driving conditions.

The AA statistics point to a much larger and worrying problem than the state of the roads. If sub-standard driving is allowed to go unchecked, then the cost of motoring for the rest of us can only increase. It seems that further and more intense training might be of benefit to everyone, both financially by pushing the cost of car insurance premiums down and reducing the number of car accident compensation claims, and in terms of safety.

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Testimonials

Since contacting Stan I was continously informed of the development and progress of each step of my claim. Stan was persistent and patient throughout the whole process and reassured me he would win me the compensation I deserved - and he was true to his word. I am extremely happy with the outcome of my claim and this is all thanks to Stan.

Sarah

My case was dealt with personally by Stan Moffat and what a brilliant guy. His office contacted me personally by telephone at the start of my claim to explain who they were and what they would be doing for me. All through the case I was kept fully informed of all actions either by e-mail or by letter and reassured by Stan several times of any queries I had.

It is very seldom that a solicitor will take the time to speak personally at any time with you without getting run through secretaries etc. I commend this man for that as this was a very upsetting and important time for me and he did everything in his power to make this as easy and as swift as possible for me.

I highly recommend the service that this firm brings and the speed that they move at.

J McMahon

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