Being involved in an incident that results in a car being written off is something no motorist would want as they go about their daily business.

However, a new study suggests it has happened to a surprising number of drivers on the roads today.

A third of Brits have experienced a write-off

A poll of 2,000 Britons by InsuretheGap found 29 per cent of motorists have written off a car, while an unlucky seven per cent have done it more than once.

Two-thirds reported the incident wasn’t their fault, with 55 per cent blaming a third party and ten per cent saying they had had their car stolen and then written off by the thief.

However, 27 per cent admitted they were at fault, with ten per cent reporting the incident happened to their car alone and nine per cent explaining another vehicle had been involved.

Interestingly, men were more likely to write a car off than women, with 32 per cent and 26 per cent respectively having suffered this fate.

Ben Wooltorton of InsuretheGap said: “If your car is written off the insurance company will usually only pay its value at the time of the incident, not what you paid for it, which can be especially painful if you’re still paying finance on it.”

In industry jargon, a write-off applies to cars that have either sustained so much damage they are unfit to go back on the roads, or are still safe to drive but beyond economical repair.

Many incidents that result in write-offs are not particularly serious and drivers are often surprised that what appears to be minor cosmetic damage can result in their vehicle being declared unroadworthy.

Heather Stark, brand manager at The Fuelcard People, comments: “No one wants to be responsible for an incident that results in a write-off, so this is a timely reminder to take care out there as winter approaches.”

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