Car insurance claims fell during the Christmas weekend as the ice and snow melted in slightly warmer temperatures, according to AA car insurance.
Wednesday 23 December was one of the busiest days for car insurance claims during the recent bout of cold weather, with nearly half of claims being directly related to snow and ice.
The AA found that the number of car accident claims seemed to have moderated throughout last week, following the busiest day for claims last Monday, but the UK is not out of the woods yet, as further snowfalls in Scotland and the North East continued to cause trouble for motorists.
The south saw a welcome fall in the number of accidents as the snow and ice began to melt, but by mid-day on Christmas Eve, 160 new claims had been made at AA car insurance, with nearly half due to the affects of adverse weather conditions.
Simon Douglas, director of AA Insurance said that black ice – the "hidden enemy" – accounted for a significant proportion of claims received on Christmas Eve.
Mr Douglas explained that when there's black ice, "the road simply looks damp and for drivers, it's often too late when they realise that there is ice between their tyres and the road. An adverse camber or gradient; a dab on the brakes or other sudden movement can send a car sliding completely out of control. It's as if the car is being controlled by someone else: you're almost completely helpless once a slide starts."
Mr Douglas applauded those Brits who decided to delay their Christmas travel plans until driving conditions improved. "Caution is vital," he said, "it's far better to delay your journey and arrive late, but safe."
Further snow falls across Wales, Scotland, the Midlands, North East and the West Country have added to drivers' misery by holding up their return to work after Christmas, affecting road, air, and rail travel.
Stephen Davenport, a forecaster with MeteoGroup, the Press Association's weather division, said: "You can virtually draw a line from Suffolk to Avon and say that south of that there will be no snow.
"It could be as mild as 9-10C (48-50F) in the south west of England today but in other areas, such as Scotland, temperatures will struggle to get above freezing. There could be some severe frosts over the next few days."
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