A fifth of motorists claim to have seen a ghost while driving

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With Halloween and the longer nights now upon us, breakdown cover provider, Green Flag, has revealed that drivers across the nation are catching a serious case of the spooks.

Nearly two thirds of drivers (61 per cent) say they’d rather take another form of transport than drive in the dark and almost half (44 per cent) of UK drivers avoid driving in the dark. Almost one in ten (nine per cent, or 3.6 million) drivers have been involved in an accident due to driving in the dark. A further 11 per cent, or 4.9 million, drivers know someone who’s been in a car accident as a result of driving in the dark.

When it comes to driving around Halloween, almost a quarter (23 per cent) of drivers say they feel “spooked” while driving around this date, and a sixth (13 per cent) of drivers avoid driving on Halloween due to superstitions. Almost a fifth (18 per cent) say they’ve seen a ghost while driving in the dark, and with the recent stream of horror film releases, drivers may be keeping their wits about them even more.

With darker and more dangerous driving conditions, Green Flag is predicting a 10 per cent increase in breakdowns in the week leading up to Halloween (25th to 31st October) compared to the week before (18th – 24th October). A staggering 105,400 breakdowns are expected in the week leading up to Halloween, which equates to an astounding 10 breakdowns per minute.

Over a third (35 per cent) of UK drivers say their hometown has scary roads they avoid driving down and, on average, drivers would add 3.37 miles to their journey to avoid scary, dark roads. Leeds is the city with the scariest roads in the UK, with 46 per cent of drivers taking an alternative route to avoid the scary roads in their city. In second place is Belfast (45 per cent), followed by Birmingham (41 per cent). In contrast, the least frightening streets are found in Liverpool, where just 25 per cent of drivers in this city reported avoiding scary roads (full results in the table below).

For those who will be in their cars this Halloween, Green Flag will be on hand to reach drivers even on the UK’s scariest roads. In a joint initiative with the AA and the RAC, Green Flag has adopted the ‘slow down, move over’ policy, calling on ministers to make it a requirement that drivers slow down and move over when approaching the scene of a breakdown. The initiative looks to ensure that the safety of its members and its mechanics out on the roads is of the greatest priority.

Damon Jowett, head of service delivery at Green Flag, said: “The roads can be a very dangerous and scary place when travelling in the dark. As the clocks go back, and in the run up to Halloween, our research has revealed the things that give drivers the spooks. As ever, Green Flag will continue to work tirelessly to support its customers this Halloween, to ensure that party-goers can enjoy their time with family and friends, as care-free as possible.

“In conjunction with the AA and the RAC, we advocate the ‘slow down, move over’ campaign, so that clear guidance is provided by the government to ensure that not only the safety of all motorists is taken into consideration but also that of our hard-working roadside assistance technicians”.