Motor payouts pass £1m per day thanks to 'surge in vehicle thefts'Wed, 10/04/2019
Motor insurers are now paying out £1m each day, according to new figures – and a surge in vehicle thefts is partly to blame.
Scott McGee, Insurance Times, reports:
Figures released today by the ABI shows a car theft claim is made every six minutes
Motor insurers are now paying out a record £1m every day according to figures published today by the Association of British Insurers (ABI).
The association attributes the increase to a “surge in vehicle thefts, including keyless car crime.”
According to Home Office figures, there has been a 50% rise in vehicle thefts over the last five years, and this has been reflected in the ABI figures.
It says that a new claim for vehicle theft is made, on average, every six minutes.
The report saw a dramatic increase to the cost of vehicle thefts also, rising by 29% on 2017 to £376m, a record annual high. This equates to just over £1 million being paid every day. The number of claims, at 56,000, rose 12% on 2017, with a new theft claim being made every six minutes.
The cost of all motor claims paid, including property damage, personal injury and theft was over £8.6bn, working out at £16,000 every single minute. This was up by nearly half a billion pounds on 2017 to another record annual high.
Finally, the total amount spent by insurers in vehicle repair rose to £4.8bn. due to the advancing complexity of repairs and the weakening of the pound.
The average overall claim value was £3,082.
Laurenz Gerger, ABI’s motor policy adviser, said: “The resurgence in car crime is worrying. The record amounts paid to motorists by their insurers in part reflects the vulnerability of some cars to keyless relay theft. Action by motor manufacturers to tackle this high-tech vulnerability, allied with owners taking some simple, inexpensive precautions will help reverse this unwelcome trend.
“Despite rising vehicle crime, UK motorists continue to get the most from a very competitive motor insurance market, which saw the average premium fall in 2018, the first annual decrease since 2014. But with cost pressures around theft and repairs remaining, implementing the Civil Liability Act is crucial to delivering a fairer compensation system for claimants and reducing high legal costs, to help ensure competitively priced motor insurance.”
The vast amount of money that insurers are being forced to pay out, in addition to the rate that theft claims are being made, illustrates the increasing issue of car theft. It is a signal that much more needs to be done to improve how we both combat and deter car thieves.