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17 March 2017, 00:00

Animal damage leaves motorists exclaiming 'oh deer'

  • Animals caused more than £600,000 worth of damage to over 50s vehicles last year

  • Almost 300 incidents involving deer causing over £360,000 in damage

  • Average repair costs of £1,400 for animal related motor claims

  • Claims include low flying pigeons and cows kicking cars

The over 50s are keen motorists with more than nine out of ten regularly getting behind the wheel* but it seems like the animal kingdom is keen on disrupting their journeys as they caused more than £600,000 worth of vehicle damage last year, according to analysis of Saga Car Insurance claims data.**

Incidents involve cows and even pigeons but the biggest culprits by far are unruly deer causing over £360,000 worth of damage in the last 12 months.

Here are some of the most unusual animal related car insurance claims that have left Saga customers dumbfounded and of course let us spare a thought for the poor animals involved:

Badger beware

One customer was on his way to work when a badger jumped out of the bushes at the side of the road and collided with his car. The startled commuter was left stranded with almost £2,400 of damage to his vehicle.

Oh deer

One policyholder was returning home after enjoying dinner out when a deer darted into the road. The resulting head-on collision put the customer’s car out of action and resulted in £4,000 of repair costs.

Low flying pigeons

A customer had a lucky escape when travelling on the motorway. A pigeon flew across the carriageway colliding with the policyholder’s vehicle. Fortunately the driver was able to carry on with his journey but not without £1,000 of damage.

Curious cows

One Saga policyholder parked their vehicle in a farmer’s field much to the curiosity of some cattle that subsequently surrounded the vehicle. When the owner’s dog barked from inside the car the frightened cows kicked out before running away, but not before causing almost £1,000 of damage.

Runaway dogs

One driver was returning home after some retail therapy when a dog ran into the road. Unable to swerve in time the collision caused £2,500 worth of damage and left the policyholder startled as the air bags were deployed.

Wild horses

One Saga policyholder was left in disbelief when four escaped horses galloped towards his vehicle as he journeyed to the shops. One of the horses collided with the vehicle smashing the bumper, headlights, wing mirror and doors causing £5,000 worth of damage and putting the customer’s car out of action.

Saga’s Paul Green commented: “It appears that animal antics can cause mayhem for motorists. This is why you need insurance that will get you back on the road no matter what the cause.”

Saga aims to keep the over 50s on the road and moving. So if a customer’s car is accidentally damaged by animals then it will give them a hire car to use while their vehicle is in the garage being repaired.


Notes to Editors

Populus interviewed 10,863 Saga respondents, all aged 50+, online between 22 and 30 August 2016. Results have been weighted to be representative of all GB adults.
**Based on Saga Car Insurance claims data over the last 12 months

About Saga Car Insurance

• Saga is the leading specialist insurance provider for people aged 50 and over, offering cover tailored to their needs
• Saga is accessible via UK based call centres and there are no automated telephone menus
• Saga Car Insurance is a Which? Recommended provider and also holds a Defaqto 5 star rating
• Saga Car Insurance offers uninsured driver cover, up to £500 get you home cover, £1,000 of personal belongings cover and vandalism cover
• For more information, visit or call 0800 015 0756

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