10,000 breakdowns predicted

RAC has predicted more than 10,000 breakdowns today Credit: PA

Thousands of drivers are facing a false start to 2013 as thousands of cars that have gone unused over the festive period fail to start, experts have warned.

Today, the RAC predicts more than 10,000 breakdowns - 40% more than any other day - as millions of motorists return to work from the festive break.

'Second cars' are the most likely candidates due to lack of use over the holiday, making them more susceptible to battery failure.

In January 2011, the RAC saw a 60% rise in breakdowns during the return to work.

The company is urging motorists to park their vehicles in garages whenever possible and to switch off any connected electrical appliances such as sat navs or iPods to protect and conserve battery life.

They also advise motorists to fill up with fuel a day or two before going back to work to avoid the queues at the pumps.