Survey: Most road users don’t think they could cause an accident[Rasmus Parve | 24.04]
Estonian drivers are confident in their driving skills and consider it unlikely that they could cause an accident. Young drivers under 30 years old living in larger cities are most confident.
According to a recent survey by Seesam Insurance, 64% of drivers are most afraid of accidents caused by other drivers on the road, with almost as many fearing a wild animal running in front of their car and causing glass damage.
“Less than half of the respondents believe they could be the cause of an accident,” says Rasmus Parve, motor claims area manager at Seesam. “Young people up to the age of 30 and those living in larger cities are the most confident in this respect. On the other hand, drivers aged 40-49 and living in smaller settlements are more likely to believe that they could cause a road accident.”
According to the insurer, Seesam’s statistics show that the majority of comprehensive insurance claims involve traffic accidents, followed by glass damage. Collisions with wild animals or livestock are still quite frequent. The most common of the latter are accidents where an animal runs onto the road and is hit by the car straight on.
This year alone, Seesam has registered 130 such insurance cases, with claims amounting to almost €400,000. Last year, there were almost 600 cases of wildlife collisions, which cost the insurance company more than €1.6 million.
Drivers have problems with honesty and attentiveness
The survey also shows that Estonian people consider both parking accidents and driving off the road to be the least likely accidents. People living in Ida-Viru County are the least likely to believe that they would drive off the road (16%). Drivers in Viljandi and Põlva County, however, consider driving off the road to be more than three times more likely than their counterparts in Eastern Estonia.
“Although people don’t think that parking accidents are likely, in reality, accidents happen every day in both indoor and outdoor car parks and they make up a significant proportion of road accident statistics,” says Parve. “The average claim in a car accident in a car park is around €1000. Unfortunately, it is also quite common for the person who caused the damage to leave the scene without waiting for the owner or without informing the police. The share of such incidents has increased somewhat in recent years.”
The most common causes of accidents in car parks are grazings and straight-on collisions caused by manoeuvring, but accidents are also often caused by speeding and failure to obey the right-hand turning rules.
“If a person comes out of a shop or home to find that someone has damaged their car in the car park and then left the scene, they should pick up the phone and call the police and follow their instructions,” says the insurer. “We also know of situations where an honest witness reported the incident to the police before the car owner. Cameras monitoring car parks should not be underestimated either, as they may have caught the person who caused the accident.”
According to Seesam’s representative, in addition to accidents caused by drivers leaving car parks, accidents caused by inattentiveness, such as head-on collisions with structures, reversing accidents, etc., stand out in the statistics for the last year. “There is no room for distractions, so you should drive feeling rested and stop using your phone or doing other things while driving,” says the insurer. “Accepting responsibility in accidents should also be natural in situations where witnesses may not be available.”