Keep Off the Roads on September 1st Warns AXA

Aug 28, 2012, 09:17 ET from AXA

LONDON, August 28, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --

As holidaymakers head home after the summer, AXA car insurance claims data reveals that September 1st has been the worst day of the summer season for accidents for three years running.

Last year saw the biggest spike in accidents on this day with a massive 40% more claims being made than on the average day in the rest of the summer holiday period.

And the picture is the same for the previous two years with accidents up on the average holiday count by around 30% on 1 September in both 2009 and 2010.  

This year, 1 September falls on a Saturday and AXA is predicting that figures may be even higher as people return home at the end of holidays on the last Saturday of the school summer holidays.

Sarah Vaughan, motor director at AXA insurance says: "Every year we see a surge of accidents at this time of year as people head back after the August bank holiday, or return home after their summer holidays.  Generally speaking we tend to see lots of accidents on our roads over the few days following the bank holiday Monday.

"However, we are particularly concerned this year that the 'bogey' date of 1 September also falls on a Saturday which is traditionally a big 'switchover' day for holidaymakers.

"We would urge all motorists to take special care driving home and plan their journey to eliminate the stresses that often cause needless accidents."

Top ten tips for getting home safely on 1 September:

  • Leave plenty of time for your journey.  If you are rushing you are more likely to drive dangerously and cause an accident
  • Plan your route.  All roads will be busy but if you know where you are going then you are less likely to get lost and stressed
  • Once you know your route use a traffic information provider to check that there are no major problems along the way
  • Factor in a break if you are on a long journey.  Tiredness is a big cause of accidents so leave time to stop off and rest if necessary
  • Make sure you have games/DVDs at the ready to keep the kids occupied - bored children are a big distraction
  • Keep snacks and drinks in the car.  Dehydration and low blood sugar are not good for anyone but behind the wheel they can be dangerous
  • Carry out checks on your car before you leave - top up water, oil, tyres and petrol.  Other road users will not thank you if you suffer an unnecessary breakdown
  • Check your breakdown cover and motor insurance is up to date in case the worst does happen - and have the numbers readily available
  • Set your phone to hands free before you set off
  • If you can be flexible about when you leave, avoid 1 September!

Notes to Editors

Claims data from 2009-2011

About AXA

AXA is one of the largest general insurers in the UK and underwrites a broad range of products for individuals and businesses. AXA Direct Insurance offers car, home and travel insurance through its website and is designed to make buying insurance fast, secure, convenient and easy-to-use.

AXA UK is a part of the AXA Group. The AXA Group is a worldwide leader in insurance and asset management, with 163,000 employees serving 101 million clients in 57 countries. In 2011, IFRS revenues amounted to Euro 86.1 billion and IFRS Underlying Earnings to Euro 3.9 billion. AXA had Euro 1,065 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2011.

In the UK AXA operates through a number of business units including: AXA Wealth; AXA Commercial Lines, AXA Personal Lines, AXA PPP healthcare, AXA Ireland and an independent distribution business Bluefin. AXA employs over 12,000 staff in the UK.

The AXA ordinary share is listed on compartment A of Euronext Paris under the ticker symbol CS (ISN FR 0000120628 - Bloomberg: CS FP - Reuters: AXAF.PA). AXA's American Depository Share is also quoted on the OTC QX platform under the ticker symbol AXAHY.

The AXA Group is included in the main international SRI indexes, such as Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI) and FTSE4GOOD, and is a founding member of the UN Environment Programme's Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) Principles for Sustainable Insurance.