Rear-end collisions on the rise

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The number of rear-end shunts on Britain's roads has risen by seven per cent over the last three years, according to new research by collision management firm Accident Exchange.

Despite an increase in the amount of hi-tech safety kit fitted to modern cars, not least Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB) that can prevent low speed collisions, rear-end crashes now make up 35 per cent of all accidents recorded by the company.

Unfortunately, such technology is not yet standard equipment, with most major manufactures offering it as a cost option. However, this is likely to change in the near future, with leading car safety organisation Euro NCAP recently announcing that no car will now be awarded a full five-star safety rating unless it is fitted with automatic braking technology.

The news is likely to be welcomed by motorists and insurers alike, with the average rear-end crunch resulting in a £2,000 repair bill.

Liz Fisher, director of sales development at Accident Exchange, said: "There's no obvious explanation because the nation's roads are full of safer, more advanced vehicles which, in some cases, are supposed to help a driver to avoid collisions.

"However, it could be argued that increased connectivity in cars means the modern driver has more distractions while at the wheel from other technology, like mobile phones or MP3 players."

Drivers who run into the back of another car are normally automatically held at fault, though exceptions to this rule (Highway Code section 126) include hitting a driver that has suddenly changed lane or slowed down suddenly for no reason.