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rac breakdown reportA report by UK motoring organisation the RAC on its members has concluded that drivers are 50% more likely to breakdown during the winter months than at any other time of the year.

Learn from past mistakes

In light of this information the organisation has urged motorists to better prepare their vehicles for the anticipated snow and cold weather and to learn from past mistakes.  Some of these problems include getting stuck in the snow, running out of fuel or not even being able to get out of the driveway.

Worst times

December and January were the worst months with the RAC getting 1.35 million calls and attending over 750,000 breakdowns last year with Monday being the most common day for vehicle problems.  The worst day was the 4th January which saw the organisation handle almost 15,000 breakdowns culminating in one of the busiest in their history.

Common problems

The analysis shows that the most common issues experienced by motorists were:

  • Battery related problems
  • Tyre related problems such as having a puncture or no spare available
  • Being involved in a road traffic accident
  • Alternator problems
  • The engine being flooded

The RAC said that some forecasters are predicting another bad winter and that motorists should prepare now before the weather hits, including checking their breakdown cover.

Prepare for winter

RAC Regional Patrol Manager, David Hawes, said of the issue “Over 6,000 motorists without breakdown cover contacted RAC for help last winter and I’d urge those with cover in place to double-check it’s to the level they assume or require. It may come with their bank account or car insurance, in which case again they should check the level of cover it provides - are they covered, for instance, if they break down at home or only by the roadside?”

In order to prepare for the coming weather, the RAC has highlighted several areas for motorists:

  • Check tyre pressure including your spare tyre
  • Check that tyre tread depth is at least 3mm in order to cope with winter conditions
  • Check oil levels
  • Check that all vehicle lights are working and are kept clean
  • Check both front and rear wipers in case of wear and splitting
  • Ensure screenwash contains an additive that prevents freezing

The RAC were formed in 1897, have over 7 million members and assist drivers with over 2.8 million breakdowns every year.

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