Sep 25, 2022

Mawazo Writing Africa

Writing about the main

Insurance claims show road crashes almost back to pre-Covid-19 levels

The number of road accidents in SA is almost back to pre-Covid-19 levels.

This is according to Old Mutual Insure, which has drawn its conclusions from trends it sees in claims reports from customers.

“One of the trends we are seeing in terms of claims is that the number of traffic accidents such as accidents, including fender damage and more serious events, is almost back to pre-Covid-19 levels, which is very worrying said Lizo Mnguni, spokesman for Old Mutual Insure.

He said that before the pandemic, there was a higher frequency of vehicles on the roads. During the Covid-19 lockdown, when motorists were not using their vehicles as much, claims for road-related incidents fell.

“As many organizations have adopted hybrid working models, curfews have been suspended for those who are drivers back on the roads and more serious accidents are being reported, many resulting in fatalities.”

Another factor Mnguni cited was that the road infrastructure was not related to the number of drivers on the roads has kept up.

Mnguni said that when there are more road accidents, that means higher premiums.

“The biggest cost factor for insurance in South Africa is a high number of accidents and vehicle theft rates. These are largely caused by poor enforcement and the large number of unauthorized vehicles and drivers on the roads.

“When road safety improves, drivers can look forward to lower premiums.”

He said a major obstacle to road safety is that there are so many uninsured, underinsured and disabled vehicles on the roads.

“Of the estimated 11 million cars and drivers on the roads, is assuming only about a third, or about 3.5 million, are insured. That means if a driver is involved in an accident, there’s a good chance it’s an uninsured driver.”

Mguni said long term, the Administrative Adjudication of Road Traffic Offenses ( Aarto) Act , which is a pending regulation, was intended to improve road safety by reducing the number of drivers and vehicles without a license.

“Ultimately, the intention of the regulation was to to improve driving results in general, which is urgently needed.

“Road safety does not only affect people’s lives. It hits your back pocket right when it comes to your insurance premiums.”

Support independent journalism by subscribing to The Sunday Times. Only 20 R for the first month.