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Association of British Insurers: 'car potentially a lethal weapon'

James Dalton, Association of British Insurers (ABI) head of motor insurance, said: "A car is potentially a lethal weapon."

He added that "radical action" is needed to "reduce the tragic waste of young lives on our roads, especially among the 17-24 age group".

An ABI spokesman told The Daily Telegraph: "Any restrictions to limit the number of passengers young newly qualified young drivers can carry for an initial period after passing their test would be a step in the right direction."

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'Credit hire firms tripling cost of courtesy cars'

Having a car accident can incur a range of fees Credit: REUTERS/David Caird/Pool

Insurers are making money from drivers who break down by referring them to a range of emergency services.

For example, credit hire firms pay tip-off fees of around £300 for details about a driver involved in an accident so that they can arrange a courtesy car. The bill is then passed on to the at-fault motorist's insurer for the cost.

Evidence to the Office of Fair Trading suggests credit hire firms charge between £1,200 and £1,500 for the service, compared with £400 to £500 if the insurer organised the vehicle themselves.

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