Millions of motorists are driving on UK roads with accident-damaged vehicles, says a new report by Accident Exchange.
The company says that cash-strapped drivers are electing not to fix damage caused by minor prangs, unaware that their vehicles could have been compromised in terms of safety.
The report also highlights that while the number of accidents between 2006 and 2012 has remained largely static, the number of recorded repairs to vehicles has fallen by over a fifth.
Analysts at management company Accident Exchange say the drop is due to a rise in insurance costs and a continuing squeeze on household incomes.
CEO Steve Evans said: “The double whammy impact of losing their No Claims Discounts and paying increased excesses on insurance claims has seen the number of private settlements between fault and non-fault drivers rise. The innocent party is then choosing to pocket the money rather than seeking to repair what they see merely as cosmetic damage.”