Boylan: ‘Prices of car insurance unacceptable’

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Friday, January 27th, 2012
Newry and Armagh MLA Cathal Boylan has commented on proposals in which new technology could be used to reduce motor insurance costs in the north. Currently, insurance in the north is on average 11% higher than that in England. However, in some areas motorists are required to pay up to 70% more – a statistic which Mr Boylan brands ‘unacceptable’. Boylan stated, “As a member of the Environment Committee, which has responsibility for road safety and motor insurance issues, I recognised some time ago that the extortionate cost of insurance here needed to be addressed. Today the committee met with the Consumer Council, the Association of British Insurers and the Law Society to hear their views on the current situation and how the disparity in costs to motorists in the north might be addressed. I am pleased to say that this meeting went well and there are some good ideas to make the insurance market more accessible.” The Sinn Féin representative went on to discuss the possibility of using cutting edge technology to improve the driving habits and lower premiums for drivers under 25. “This innovative ‘black box’,” Mr Boylan said, “Would be discretely placed in the vehicle and would monitor driver behaviour such as speed, use of brakes and steering application. Good driver behaviour could lead to the lowering of insurance premiums while reckless conduct could see increased costs or even cancelling of insurance.” He added, “I think this would be a positive step. It is a fairer system as those who drive well are rewarded while those who are not as careful pay more. It would also teach recently qualified drivers best practice which would lead to better safety and less accidents on our roads.”
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