Mobile use doubles claims frequency

Wunelli has revealed that hand held mobile phone usage at the wheel almost doubles claims frequencies for insurers.

Analysis of the driving behaviour of more than 4,300 motorists over a period of 18 months by Wunelli, a LexisNexis Risk Solutions company, found that when drivers use a mobile phone hand held at the wheel, claims frequency almost doubles as hard braking increases by three quarters (75%). In addition, drivers who use a mobile phone hands free increase their risk of an accident by a fifth.

The driving behaviour data was gathered via a telematics app developed by Wunelli for Drivology, the insurance brand.

The findings have been revealed as the government gathers evidence as part of a public consultation on stricter penalties for using a hand-held mobile phone whilst driving.

Paul Stacy, founding director for Wunelli said, ‘This data comes from telematics smartphone devices. Telematics policies reward good driving and provide feedback to drivers on the risks they face. The benefits to safer driving are significant so it would be a positive step if the UK government encouraged more telematics policies by making them exempt from Insurance Premium Tax (IPT) rather than further increasing the cost of insurance, through the 0.5% hike announced in the March Budget, bringing IPT to 10%. We think the societal benefits would far out weight the loss in tax revenues.’

The analysis found that men use their mobile at the wheel almost double the time women do and motorists between the ages of 25-35 put themselves at most risk of danger by using their mobile phone hand held at the wheel more than any other age group.