Statistics from New Zealand’s AMI Insurance show that drivers under the age of 25 are 26 per cent more likely to have an accident, compared to all other drivers. AMI’s parent company, IAG, said the data highlights the importance of driver training and safety, awareness by all drivers on the roads, and having insurance in case things go wrong.
Wayne Tippet, AMI’s Executive General Manager Claims, said the insurer is committed to helping keep young drivers safe on the road. “We want to raise awareness around the issue, and let young drivers know that we are here to help.”
Hamish Piercy, Fleet Risk Manager for AMI, State and NZI Insurance, and a former New Zealand Police officer attached to the serious crash unit with more than 33 years’ crash investigation experience, is unsurprised by a high number of claims for drivers under 25.
“There are a lot of great young drivers out there, and some excellent driver education programmes, but these statistics show that we can’t be complacent when it comes to driver safety,” Piercy said. “It’s an unavoidable fact that to gain experience, you have to drive, so as a society we need to look at how we can enable that in safe ways.
For a limited period, AMI has partnered with Fleetcoach to offer an online driver education course that eligible AMI young driver customers can complete to qualify for a discount off their vehicle policy excess.
“We’re hoping this will encourage more young people to take up insurance, and to know that we’re on their side in case things go wrong,” Tippet said. “I think it’s particularly important as we head into the summer months and road trip season.”
Piercy said online training is a great way to gain experience because it’s a safe environment.
“It’s affordable and accessible, and you get consistent messaging during the course. I think we need to acknowledge that sometimes older drivers can pass on bad habits, so it’s good to get the consistent teaching that an online course offers,” he added.
The course focuses on three key areas: core skills, distraction and inattention, and speed.
“The course is about finding new ways to encourage our young drivers to get out there and get experience but also to be as safe as possible while doing so,” Piercy said.
“We really hope our next generation of drivers will take up the offer.”