Motorists have been urged to be extra cautious after The Beast from the East led to motor insurance claims worth almost £11 million in just three days.
The challenging weather conditions with snow, ice and biting winds, saw over 8,000 claims submitted in just 72 hours, with two thirds due to snow-related crashes.
Martin Pitchford, said the weather had caused havoc across the UK and motor insurance claims had spiralled.
“The AA said 8,260 private cars were involved in shunts, bumps and scrapes, with total damage caused amounting to £10.7 million.
“And on Wednesday this week alone, the number of claims was more than a third higher than an average February day, so we really have seen an unprecedented increase.”
Mr Pitchford said the AA figures showed the majority of collisions had involved two moving vehicles, often on bends and hills, with the next most common cause being cars hitting objects such as bollards, walls or buildings.
“After that, the figures show tail-end crashes were the next most likely cause, with one car running into the back of another that’s stationary, followed by motorists hitting parked vehicles, and some leaving the road completely.
“Thankfully most of the collisions reported were fairly minor because drivers tend to be travelling more slowly when there is ice and snow on the roads, so the number of injuries was not high.
“But the figures reinforce the point that motorists need to take real care and leave plenty of space between themselves and the vehicle in front.
“It’s important to try to avoid making any extreme moves like accelerating or braking suddenly as your tyres will lost their grip – and if you have to take evasive action to prevent your vehicle hitting another car, take even more care as that’s when it’s more likely you’ll lose control.
“Driving in these conditions is difficult, but if you have no option but to make a journey, just make sure you allow plenty of time and drive with extra care and attention.”