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Majority in favour of State-provided car insurance scheme

More than half of people surveyed said they blamed the insurance industry for spiralling costs.

Image: steering wheel image via Shutterstock

THE MAJORITY OF Irish people believe the State should provide a car insurance scheme.

This is according to a poll by Amarach Research for RTÉ’s Clare Byrne Live. 67% of those who answered a poll said there should be a State-provided car insurance scheme. Just 16% were against the idea and 17% said they didn’t know.

Last week the Joint Committee on Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform heard presentations on the spiralling costs of motor insurance in Ireland.

According to AA’s annual survey on motoring costs, the average cost of running a car has increased by €255.82 to €10,849.42 in the last year. The AA says the 38.6% increase in insurance premiums is wiping out any savings motorists are making from low fuel prices.

Kian Griffin of Ireland Underground, a group representing Ireland’s younger drivers, told the committee last week that insurance costs have young drivers feeling “as if they’re besieged on all fronts by a sense of hopelessness”.

“We’re on our knees and begging at this stage,” he said. “We don’t know where else to turn.”

Who is to blame?

The Claire Byrne Live survey also asked respondents who they blamed most for the rise in motor insurance costs. 55% said they blamed the insurance industry, 28% said the legal profession and 12% said they blamed drivers most.

Hearings will resume tomorrow on the rising costs of motor insurance. This will include presentations from Irish Road Haulage Association, the Irish Taxi Drivers’ Federation, the Car Rental Council, the Freight Transport Association Ireland, Law Society of Ireland and The Council of the Bar of Ireland.

Committee Chairman John McGuinness TD, said: “Following on from last week’s hearings, we will now have the chance to meet with those that use our roads commercially. The rising cost of motor insurance impacts directly on their ability to earn a living.”

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