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Coronavirus update Last updated 9th July 16:00

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In line with guidance from the Government and to help look after our colleagues, most of our team are now working from home and are taking calls. However, waiting times are longer than normal and the quality of the call may not be as clear as if we were talking to you from our call centre. We're committed to supporting you in the best way we can and will be here throughout to keep you updated so make sure to check back regularly.

At this time, please help us to prioritise essential calls by using our online services.

  • If you're a car customer you can use MyAccount or the app to make policy changes or payments, including changing your payment date, checking your documents or to report or track a claim (MyAccount only).
  • If you're a home, bike or van customer, you can make policy changes or requests using our online forms.

If you do phone, we may only be able to deal with your query if:

  • Your policy is due to renew and you're concerned it's no longer suitable for you or you're thinking of cancelling your insurance, or
  • You are worried about making future payments, or
  • You're in a vulnerable situation or an NHS or frontline health care worker who can't easily access our online services, or
  • You need to make a claim and your vehicle is un-driveable or if you need urgent roadside assistance.

For all other queries, including buying a new policy, please first read our Coronavirus FAQs for the latest advice and help to use our online services.

Our opening hours have changed to: Monday to Friday 9am-6pm and Saturday 10am-2pm.

Read our Coronavirus FAQs

Hastings Direct.
i

Coronavirus update Last updated 9th July 16:00

Show more

  • We hope you and those close to you are keeping safe. Our teams are now working from home so we're very sorry if you notice the sound quality isn't as good as usual or you experience periods of silence. We're working hard on improving this so please bear with us.
  • Please help us prioritise urgent calls by only phoning us if you want to discuss your renewal or you're thinking of cancelling your insurance, or you're in financial difficulties and you're worried about payments, or you're an NHS or frontline healthcare worker.
  • For anything else, you can now manage your policy online. For latest advice and help to use our online tools, read our Coronavirus FAQs.

In line with guidance from the Government and to help look after our colleagues, most of our team are now working from home and are taking calls. However, waiting times are longer than normal and the quality of the call may not be as clear as if we were talking to you from our call centre. We're committed to supporting you in the best way we can and will be here throughout to keep you updated so make sure to check back regularly.

At this time, please help us to prioritise essential calls by using our online services.

  • If you're a car customer you can use MyAccount or the app to make policy changes or payments, including changing your payment date, checking your documents or to report or track a claim (MyAccount only).
  • If you're a home, bike or van customer, you can make policy changes or requests using our online forms.

If you do phone, we may only be able to deal with your query if:

  • Your policy is due to renew and you're concerned it's no longer suitable for you or you're thinking of cancelling your insurance, or
  • You are worried about making future payments, or
  • You're in a vulnerable situation or an NHS or frontline health care worker who can't easily access our online services, or
  • You need to make a claim and your vehicle is un-driveable or if you need urgent roadside assistance.

For all other queries, including buying a new policy, please first read our Coronavirus FAQs for the latest advice and help to use our online services.

Our opening hours have changed to: Monday to Friday 9am-6pm and Saturday 10am-2pm.

Read our Coronavirus FAQs

Hastings Direct news: you never stop learning

Is there such a thing as good motoring news? Perhaps not, but it may be with good reason as there's little to be learnt from upbeat stories and, as everybody knows, you never stop learning as a driver. So while this week's round-up might sound somewhat negative, it might have a positive effect on your sub-conscious the next time you get behind the wheel.

Drivers wave goodbye to the map

sat nav.

More drivers than not now own a sat nav, according to new data released this week, suggesting maps are fast becoming a thing of the past.

Some 52% of motorists questioned as part of the Department for Transport's National Travel Survey (NTS) said they now used the gadgets to help them get where they want to be - a rise of 20% since 2009.

However, the proliferation of sat navs is not necessarily good news, says road safety charity Brake, which is concerned motorists are becoming over reliant on the technology.

Gary Rae, Brake's campaigns manager, said: "The sat nav is there to help you keep focused on driving rather than worry about directions, but it's not there to make all the decisions for you.

"Driving is an unpredictable activity, so you still need to look at signs, particularly those warning of hazards or speed limits, and watch for people and unexpected problems."

With 7% of motorists stating in a Brake survey that they have had a near-miss because they were distracted by a sat nav, it appears there's a clear argument for having youngsters assessed in their use of a sat nav during lessons.

Drivers ignoring tyre checks

tyre depth.

Whether or not they genuinely forget or conveniently forget; drivers are neglecting to carry out tyre checks despite the dangers associated with worn tyres being patently obvious.

Kwik Fit, whose latest findings suggest that as many as 3.6 million motorists put off buying new tyres until told to do so, says that many drivers are still not aware that the legal minimum tread depth is 1.6mm across three-quarters of the tyre's width.

Those drivers who assume that it's OK to wait until their car's MoT to change tyres could be in for a shock, says the tyre specialist. Illegal tyres carry a fine of up to £2,500, and motorists can expect three penalty points on their driving licence.

It's the safety aspect that really concerns Roger Griggs, communications director at Kwik Fit, however: "Tyres should be the number one priority for drivers — after all, they are the only part of a car which keeps it on the road. Even though at 1.6 millimetres of tread a tyre is legal, it will not have much grip on the road and travelling in adverse weather conditions can be treacherous."

Potholes top concern for drivers

pothole.

Here at Hastings Direct, we're all too aware of what damage a pothole can do to a car. It comes as no surprise, then, that the condition of the UK's local roads is the primary concern for drivers going into pothole season.

One in ten motorists quizzed as part of the RAC's 2015 Report on Motoring said that improving local roads should be the government's main priority as far as road infrastructure is concerned, while a further 20% listed it as one of their four main issues.

Half of the 1,500 respondents claimed to have witnessed a worsening in the quality of roads in their area in the past 12 months, with only 10% noting an improvement.

However, any hope of significant improvement appears to have been dashed, with the Local Government Association recently commenting that current funding levels leave councils with little money to carry out long-term improvements on roads.

The Department for Transport was quick to assert, however, that it is "providing nearly £6 billion to councils in England to maintain local roads over the next six years".

The seven types of driver

angry driver.

We end this week on a slightly less serious note, with a team of psychologists believing they have identified the seven types of driver.

After researchers at LSE sat down with drivers to determine how they respond to other motorists' uncertain behaviour and how this makes them feel, they were able to come up with seven common personality types.

Ranging from 'The Teacher' to 'The Escapee', the psychologists believe that motorists adopt one of the seven personality types for all or most of the time they are behind the wheel.

Dr. Chris Tennant, from LSE's Department of Social Psychology, who is leading the joint project between LSE and Goodyear, touched on how drivers might adopt multiple personalities.

He said: "From a psychological point of view, these different types of personalities represent different outlets that drivers use to deal with their frustrations and strong feelings. We are not always entirely one or the other. Depending on the situation and the interaction with others, most of us will find several of these profiles emerge."

More on LSE's seven driving personalities.

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