March is set to be one of the busiest months of the year for retailers and bodyshops, according to AX, a leading provider of accident assistance to the automotive trade.
Data gathered by AX shows the evening rush-hour is responsible for nearly one in five accidents and also revealed a 10-minute spike in winter prangs, bumps and scapes between 17:00 and 17:10, highlighting the need for accident aftercare services after hours to help capture valuable bodyshop work during peak times.
“With the downward pressures on new car sales, being in a position to proactively and sensitively support existing customers in a time of need is common-sense,” says Scott Hamilton-Cooper, sales and operations director at AX. “The March spike provides a timely reminder that dealers without an accident assistance programme not only stand to lose valuable repair work, but risk losing customers altogether.”
The analysis of over 57,000 vehicle accidents managed by AX on behalf of its automotive and insurance industry partners shows that the evening commute between 16:00 and 18:00 accounts for nearly a fifth of incidents on any given day. Almost one in six prangs happen in the 10-minute period starting at 5pm.
The afternoon school-run period between 14:00 and 16:00 was found to be the second-busiest period for accidents. Within the two-hour period, nearly-one-in five accidents took place between 15:00 and 15:10 – around the time most parents are rushing to pick up their children from school.
With 34 per cent of accidents involving one car hitting the rear of another, a further 31 per cent of incidents actually involve a moving car hitting a parked one as the driver loses control.
Hamilton-Cooper added: “Workshops and bodyshops should make sure they are adequately stocked with spare parts and staffed well to deal with the surge in repair requests.”