Car insurance claims for injured cyclists on the rise
More Than has found that car insurance claims for bodily injury have doubled in recent months due to people wanting to avoid public transport during lockdown.
According to the insurer, typically one in 10 (10%) car insurance claims for personal injury involve cyclists, pedestrians and motorcyclists, but this has doubled to one in five (20%) in recent months.
More Than says the increase is likely due to more cyclists on the road, as many look to keep fit and avoid public transport during the lockdown.
An estimated 1.3 million Brits bought a bike during lockdown to keep fit and avoid public transport in response to Covid-19
But with car usage now getting back to normal levels, More Than is urging drivers to be mindful that they will be sharing the road with an increased number of cyclists.
Gareth Davies, head of car insurance at More Than, said: “Bike sales have boomed during lockdown as Brits are looking to stay active and avoid public transport. But unfortunately, our data shows this has prompted an increase in personal injury claims for injured cyclists.
“As drivers, it’s really important to take extra precautions now that there are more cyclists on the road. Indicate clearly and give yourself and cyclists plenty of space to manoeuvre so that, if anything unexpected occurs, there is more margin for error. Junctions and blind corners are also hot spots when it comes to accidents with cyclists, so be extra careful and slow down when navigating these tricky turns.
“For cyclists, please wear a helmet and bright or reflective clothing – it could save your life. It is also important to use cycle lanes where possible and be extra wary of the cars around you, giving them plenty of space for overtaking where it is safe to do so. Cyclists undertaking or passing motorists on the left-hand side can also cause accidents, so try to avoid that as much as possible.”
The government launched the ‘Fix Your Bike’ voucher scheme in July in a bid to encourage cycling, making £50 bike repair vouchers available in England.
But cyclists have had trouble getting the hands on the vouchers with the Energy Saving Trust website, which dishes out the vouchers, crashing at launch.
There are no vouchers currently on offer. A message on the Energy Saving Trust website says: “The voucher scheme has been hugely popular and all vouchers in the first batch have now been allocated. We will be working closely with the cycling industry during this pilot stage to monitor impact. Further vouchers will be released when we are confident people will be able to get their bikes fixed at a wide range of retailers without significant waiting times.”
More Than has also seen more claims for bicycle theft, so new cyclists should check that their bike is covered for loss or theft away from their home. Most home insurance providers offer this cover as an optional extra, so it is worth checking if you have it or might need it.