LV= Britannia Rescue predicts number of bank holiday breakdowns will soar - are you prepared?

  • Breakdown claims expected to soar this bank holiday weekend as a result of the rise in staycations, up 10% compared to the rest of the month
  • LV= Britannia Rescue also predicts record number of complex breakdowns, as cars aren’t prepared for longer journeys
  • Due to longer journeys, broken-down drivers are recovered 75% further away from home on the Bank Holiday weekend
  • August bank holiday is consistently the busiest bank holiday weekend throughout the year for breakdowns with the M5 motorway seeing biggest increase

LV= Britannia Rescue, the breakdown provider, is predicting there will be a record high number of complex breakdowns this bank holiday weekend, with many cars being driven less or still parked on driveways and not prepared for longer journeys. In addition, with breakdown claims expected to soar as a result of the rise in staycations, LV= Britannia Rescue is urging drivers to be prepared and check their cars before they set off for the long weekend and enjoy the end of summer.

New data1 from the breakdown provider highlights that the August bank holiday is consistently the busiest bank holiday weekend throughout the year for breakdowns, with a 10% increase compared to the rest of August. Broken-down drivers are typically recovered 75% further away on the bank holiday weekend and top vehicle faults include cars failing to start (35%), a tyre change (16%) and cars unexpectedly cutting out (6%). In addition, motorways that see the biggest increase in breakdowns on the summer bank holiday are the M5, with the M25, M1, M6 and the M4 also being frequent routes for breakdowns.

Henry Topham, Managing Director of LV= Britannia Rescue, says; “As many of us prepare to hit the road this weekend it’s important to check your car over before setting off. If you’re not a regular driver, you can keep battery issues at bay by turning the engine over or taking a drive around the block until your vehicle is up to working temperature. Being prepared for a breakdown is also really important and we recommend packing plenty of water and refreshments, a high-factor sun cream and games for the kids. Other essentials like a first aid kit, power bank to charge your phone, road map as well as a sat nav, and an empty fuel can will also come in handy.

“Ensuring you have the the right cover in place to protect yourself in case you do breakdown is also important and we’ve been working hard to prepare ourselves for what we expect will be an extremely busy weekend.”

If you are planning on going on a road trip this bank holiday, here’s a check list from LV= Britannia Rescue to consider:

  1. Check your tyre pressure: Check your tyres when they are cold; your handbook will tell you what figures your tyre pressure should be set to. You might want to add a little extra air if you are travelling on motorways for long periods of time. Whilst checking the pressure, do not forget to inspect your tyre tread too, as this is vital for a safe journey, especially in wet conditions. Also check your spare as well, so you are prepared in case anything goes wrong.
  2. Fill up your water: Your car's engine coolant is a mix of antifreeze and water, and the levels should be monitored to make sure the engine does not overheat, causing a breakdown at the roadside. You can check the coolant levels on the reservoir next to your radiator.
  3. Inspect your widescreen: A chip in the windscreen can be extremely distracting so it's best to get this fixed as soon as you can; you could potentially save yourself from a small chip turning into something more serious and costly! As well as chips and cracks, check your windscreen wipers are functioning as normal; wipers streaking the windscreen or leaving water untouched could be a sign they need to be changed.
  4. Test your lights: Take time to inspect all your lights, from brake lights to indicators, making sure they all work as they should.
  5. Check your oil level: Without the right levels of oil, the engine’s lubrication could be severely reduced; risking damage to your car. If your car has not been used in a while, or only for short commutes there could be sludge from old, used oil and topping up with fresh oil, without a proper oil change, will just mask the problem. This should be done during a service but if you are in any doubt, contact your local garage.

LV= Britannia Rescue has over 4,000 breakdown professionals to support customers in the event of a breakdown, with the average response time being just 48 minutes2. The breakdown provider has also partnered with what3words to make it easier to find anyone who is lost.   

With the number of electric vehicles on the road having increased by 177.4%3 over the last year, it’s also important that these drivers plan ahead for their trip as well and ensure they have enough charge in their battery to make the long trip. LV= Britannia Rescue customers benefit from a fleet of vehicles the company uses in partnership with AFF, which can recharge vehicles by the roadside.

For further information:

Natasha King
Senior Press Officer, General Insurance
07443 237651


1 LV= Britannia Rescue car insurance and breakdown claims data from the past five years

2 From agent performance report, December 2020 – May 2021

3 SMMT car registration figures July 2021