Insurance claims rise as the snow falls

Insurance companies have been counting the cost of car accidents and breakdowns, burst pipes and cancelled flights as the freezing weather continues to cause chaos across the UK.

Aviva, the UK's largest insurance company, has reported a 30% jump in motor insurance claims as the number of drivers falling foul of the icy road conditions continues to rise.

Insurers are also preparing themselves for a surge in the number of claims for burst pipes when the sub-zero temperatures thaw and water pipes crack.

Burst pipes account for a large majority of claims received by insurers over the winter months. In 2008, UK insurers paid out £800 million to claimants whose pipework had suffered during the cold snap stoking fears that this year's 'big freeze' will cost the industry considerably more.

Although the number of car accidents is relatively low compared with other times of year, the proportion of drivers involved in single vehicle accidents or colliding with parked cars rises dramatically.

Travel insurance claims were also on the increase as closed roads result in missed flights and airport closures lead to delayed or cancelled services.

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