Drivers urged not to over pack vehicles for Easter getaway

Families planning to get away for Easter this year have been warned they could face problems if they overload their cars, because the roads are pitted with a record number of potholes.

Research reveals that thousands of motorists will be compromising the safety of passengers by overloading their vehicle this Easter. Breakdown services predict a huge increase in both accidents and breakdowns as around nearly 7 million holiday makers head off for a break around the United Kingdom. One in ten families will pack their cars to the brim in order to cater for every eventuality.

The problem is worse than normal this year due to the state of the UK roads which are currently plagued with potholes and surface damage as a result of the harsh winter weather. Breakdown services say overloaded vehicles are more prone to breakdown when they are driven on poorly maintained roads because the adverse conditions can compromise the suspension and steering of many vehicles. A survey of drivers showed that those driving overloaded cars admitted that it causes a number of problems which include the possibility of breakdown, accidents and even legal penalties. Accidents and points on a licence could even affect the price of premiums when a driver gets their next motor insurance quote.

The research also reveals that eight million motorists have overloaded the vehicle at some point in the last five years and a fifth of those also admit that they never think about weight when packing for a trip. They focus instead on getting as much as possible to fit in the vehicle.

Peter Horton, the managing director for a national breakdown service, said “With Easter upon us and the excitement of summer holiday season fast approaching; it’s completely understandable that motorists may not be considering the dangers caused by overloading their car. But it’s vital to put safety first, especially when UK roads are in such a state of disrepair.

“To minimise the risk of breakdown and accidents, our advice is to take a little extra time before the journey starts to be sure your load is safe, secure, not blocking your view and within your car’s maximum permitted weight.”

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