Motorists in favour of black-box telemetry

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Motorists in favour of black-box telemetry

The majority of British motorists would accept black-box devices in their cars if it meant an end to rising insurance premiums, a new survey has found.

Consultants Towers Watson polled over 1,000 British motorists and found that 50 per cent would consider buying an insurance policy based on driver monitoring through telematics.

That figure rose to 57 per cent if there was a guarantee from insurers that premiums would not go up.

Originally introduced with the aim of providing affordable insurance for young drivers – the highest risk category – telematics systems monitor a person's driving style and gathers data on speed and location, and can even measure a driver's aggressiveness with the throttle and brakes to build a picture of their safeness behind the wheel.

With insurance premiums rising across the board, telematics are becoming an increasingly popular way for people of all ages to stay on the road legally, where they may otherwise not been able to afford to do so.

Speaking to The Times, Duncan Anderson of Towers Watson said: "The awareness of what telematics insurance is all about is growing. For the most part, British people seem pretty ambivalent about having their driving behaviors monitored – unless they suspect they drive in a high-risk manner and are not interesting in changing this.

"That self-selection effect, with safer drivers being keener to take up these policies, is one of the reasons telematics policies can offer lower premiums."

Currently, between 200,000-250,000 British drivers use telematics systems in their cars, with most of these policies being taken out in the last two years.

The Association of British Insurers predicts that as many as 500,000 drivers could be driving on a telematics based insurance policy by the end of next year.