British drivers are not heeding the risks of the winter weather and how they could affect driving conditions, according to new research from Sainsbury's car insurance.
As more cold weather affects areas across the UK, Sainsbury's car insurance warns that drivers should be paying attention to the weather and driving accordingly, or not driving at all if it is not safe to do so.
The survey found that a third of drivers do not bother to check the weather forecast before they set off on a journey, leaving their trip to chance.
More than a quarter of drivers admit to setting off without completely clearing the windscreen of frost or mist, while some leave their car running unattended while they wait for it to defrost.
Many drivers who do not heed advice not to drive when weather conditions are bad have learned their lesson, the study suggests, as 800,000 drivers claim to have had an accident after setting off against advice not to drive unless absolutely necessary.
This supports the warning from Sainsbury's car insurance that taking a blasé approach to winter driving conditions can put the drivers and other road users at risk.
Furthermore, Sainsbury's car insurance has recorded increases of up to 45 per cent in the number of claims it receives during previous periods of snowfall, and it warns drivers that although Spring is just around the corner, the UK is not out of the woods yet and "motorists shouldn't become complacent."
Ben Tyte, manager of Sainsbury’s car insurance, said: "UK motorists have a typically stoic approach to driving in wintry conditions, and if they start to become complacent and think the worst weather is behind them, they could increase their chances of having an accident in the coming days and weeks. Drivers should continue to take basic steps to ensure their own safety and that of other road users, especially while wintry conditions persist.
"They should also be alert to the risks of leaving their engines running whilst unattended. If their car was stolen with the keys in the ignition they would most likely not be covered by their insurance policy."
© Fair Investment Company Ltd