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Drivers in the nation's capital crash nose-to-tail and into parked cars


Drivers in Australia’s capital (ACT) are finding themselves in nose-to-tail collisions more often then any other type of crash, with almost three in 10 accidents involving one car smashing into the back of another, according to new data revealed by leading national car insurer, AAMI, in its annual Crash Index.

Nose-to-tail collisions have reduced slightly from the previous year but still remain the most common type of accident on ACT roads, followed by parked car dings. Collisions as a result of failing to give way has moved from fourth to third place, while crashes with stationary objects dropped from third place last year to fourth. 

Analysis of almost 250,000 accident insurance claims between October 2012 and September 2013, show the top five types of accidents happening on ACT and Aussie roads are:

ACT

National

1. Nose to tail (28.9%)

1. Nose to tail (27.8%)

2. Parked car dings (21.4%)

2. Parked car dings (21.4%)

3. Failed to give way (16%)

3. Failed to give way (20.5%)

4. Collision with a stationary object (15.5%)

4. Collision with a stationary object (14.7%)

5. Collision while reversing (11.3%)

5. Collision while reversing (11%)

Over the years there has been little change in the type of accidents on Australian roads. AAMI’s Crash Index reports show that the incidence of nose-to-tail collisions has remained stable for the past decade, hovering between 27% and 29%. Parked car dings, however, continue on an upward trend having risen from 15% in 2004 to 21.4% in the latest Crash Index.

“It’s surprising that ACT is above the national average when it comes to nose-to-tail collisions given it doesn’t have as much high density traffic and congestion as the major East coast cities. Australia’s capital, however, is famous for its roundabouts and the high proportion of this type of intersection, combined with common driver errors such as failing to indicate when exiting roundabouts and showing a general lack of patience, could be the reason why there are so many,” said AAMI spokesperson, Reuben Aitchison.

Accidents on ACT roads as a result of failing to give way have come down slightly in the last year. This indicates that drivers are becoming more patient, however improvement is still needed.

Mr Aitchison said: “By their own admission, nearly three-quarters of drivers who’ve had a prang say it was avoidable, so if we want to see a reduction in accidents on our roads, drivers becoming more patient would be a great start. They also need to drive responsibly to the conditions of the road. Being a safe driver means accepting and understanding that the conditions of the road are always changing and we need to adjust our driving behaviour accordingly.

“Environmental factors can play havoc on the road and contribute to making them more dangerous so give yourself plenty of room between parked and moving vehicles, especially when road surfaces are wet and slippery.”

Mr Aitchison added: “Drivers must also make a conscious decision in heavy and congested traffic to slow down, keep a safe distance between them and the car in front and resist the urge to weave in and out of lanes. Above all, be extra vigilant behind the wheel as this is the best way to avoid an accident and make our roads safer for everyone.”

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