RAC's black boxes prevent breakdowns or speeds up recovery

The RAC will use information from connected ‘black boxes’ to prevent breakdowns or speed up the recovery time of stranded vehicles.

Having a vehicle fitted with a black box has become popular in recent years to help reduce insurance premiums. Data collected from these boxes provide insights on whether an individual is a safe or reckless driver.

The RAC is extending the benefits of having a black box fitted to more quickly diagnose the reason for a vehicle breakdown. Anyone who’s found themselves stuck on the side of the road with a broken down car will know any minutes saved are welcome.

Mark Godfrey, Managing Director at RAC Insurance, said:

“Black box car insurance policies are making a massive difference to the behaviour of young drivers by helping to improve the way they drive. And, as they prove they are safe drivers, this also then helps to reduce the amount they pay for their insurance.

By being the first to include connected breakdown technology in an insurance policy we believe we are not only strengthening an already strong product, we are helping to reduce the cost and stress of motoring for our policyholders. Knowing the RAC has early warning of any major fault that might occur to their vehicles is the kind of reassurance every motorist would want.

Providing this insight helps to demystify the vehicle diagnostic process, making it easier to keep vehicles in good working order. In addition, the service can save policyholders money as some garages charge in excess of £65 to run a diagnostic check.”

Every time a vehicle starts, a diagnostic test is performed covering over 15,000 checks. Sometimes this test flags errors which do not appear on the dash and the driver may continue their journey unaware.

Companies like RAC have years of experience in analysing and diagnosing these error codes. If a potential issue has been detected, even prior to a breakdown, the driver is notified so action can be taken.

If possible, this could be to get the vehicle booked into a garage for repair to prevent disruption to the driver and other road users. Where a vehicle has broken down, a RAC patrol vehicle can be dispatched and use the error information to pick up any required parts in advance.

Currently, RAC’s solution requires taking out their Black Box Car Insurance. Not everyone is comfortable with black boxes analysing their driving so it would be good to see the RAC, or other breakdown companies, offering a black box recovery service without the need to also take out insurance.

What are your thoughts on the use of connected diagnostics for vehicle recovery? Let us know in the comments.

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