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It’s official - Durban’s drivers are the dodgiest

It may be a smallish sample - Discovery Vitality members - but the way they’ve been driving the past two to three years reveals that Durbanites are the worst drivers.

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Listen to this week's consumerwatch topic with Wendy Knowler or read the details under the podcast.

On Wednesday, Discovery released the results of the data it collected from its Vitality members in Jo’burg, Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Pretoria, and Bloemfontein in 2016, 2017, and this year.

In its Drive Well Index, which examines the ABCs of driving - acceleration, breaking, and cornering - plus phone usage, speeding and night driving, Cape Town’s drivers are the best, followed by those in PE, Bloem, Jo’burg, Pretoria, and, lastly, Durban.

Discovery Vitality Active Rewards members are incentivised to both increase their physical activity and drive better.

Apparently there is a correlation between bad driving and poor exercise habits - according to Discovery Vitality, Capetonians are not only the nation’s safest drivers, they exercise the most, too.

Durbanites are not the worst exercisers - we’re in fourth place behind the residents of Cape Town, Jo’burg, and Pretoria.

Read - Wendy Knowler investigates food expiry dates: Why we should care

On Wednesday, Vitality announced that its programme aimed at getting the nation to exercise more and drive better is being opened to everyone, not just Vitality members, for a period of 10 weeks, starting now…

You download the Discovery app which tracks both the way you move and the way you drive, and if you achieve the fitness and drive goals, you earn reward points for things such as half price coffees and smoothies or save up for bigger rewards.

According to Professor Sebastian van As, Head of the Trauma Unit at Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital, almost 90% of accidents are caused by bad driving behaviour.

Here’s a top car insurance tip - if your bad driving behaviour, or that of another motorist, has led to you putting in an insurance claim, and you’ve had a few claims in a fairly short space of time - any sort of claim, even something unrelated to driving such as a windscreen replacement or a theft from the car - bear in mind that you’ve become high risk to your insurer and you stand a good chance of getting a cancellation letter from your insurer. I’ve heard from a couple of people that this has happened to in the past month. Those letters arrive out of the blue - a month’s notice to cancel, and that’s that.

Read: More than 100 drunk drivers nabbed in Durban

The thing is, most people who’ve been dumped by their insurers battle to find alternative cover; and if they do find an insurer who will take them on, they have zero negotiating power so both the premiums and excess payments are inflated and there can be exclusions too.

So rather switch to another insurer before that happens. In other words, jump before you are pushed.

To contact Wendy, go to her Facebook page and click on the send email tab.

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