It was a journey Ayesha Jenkins had already made countless times.
The 18-year-old was travelling on the same rural roads she uses regularly when making her way to, and from, her part-time retail job. And this time she was driving even slower than usual.
The student had decided to leave work in Hereford early that January 2 evening because it was snowing. But even though she was only travelling at 10mph in a 30mph zone it wasn’t enough to prevent the teenager from encountering difficulties.
Ayesha hit a patch of ice, couldn’t correct the skid and ended up on two wheels in a ditch on her way home to Ross-on-Wye.
“I was going slowly so it wasn’t a harsh impact. But at the same time it all happened so fast,” she said.
Automatic dial out feature helps black box user in crash
The self-fitting box sits on the inside of the windscreen
As the car came to a halt, the silence was broken by a ringing sound.
Ayesha, dazed but thankfully not injured, had forgotten her black box – self-fitted as part of her FluxScore black box insurance policy with Adrian Flux – had an automatic dial out feature.
It kicked in because it suspected there had been an accident and called through to a team that are experienced in dealing with emergency situations.
“As I stopped in the ditch my first thought was: ‘My grandparents are going to kill me’,” she said.
“It was dark, really cold and I didn’t really know where I was because I’m not sure what the road is called. It was horrible as I knew my phone literally had like two percent battery left too.
“I could hear what sounded like a phone ringing and I was really confused because I wasn’t ringing anyone. Then I remembered the black box and that’s what was ringing so I answered and got put through to someone who checked if I was ok and started talking to me about what had happened.
“It was really nice to have someone there to speak to as soon as it happened because you’re sort of in a state where you don’t really know what’s going on. They knew where I was, it calmed me down as I hadn’t had to make the call myself.”
‘Life-saving’ black box technology hailed by crash victim
Ayesha Jenkins, the young driver who was relieved she had a FluxScore black box in her car after a minor crash.
After getting out of the vehicle and being taken home by her grandparents, the call handler ensured the vehicle would be collected the next day.
The Hyundai i10, bought by her grandparents after passing her test, was Ayesha’s first car. Despite the low-speed incident it was a write off.
With 73% of young driver fatalities occurring on rural roads, the fact it could have been much more serious wasn’t lost on the Herefordshire resident.
She said: “It’s definitely technology that can save lives. Mine wasn’t a serious accident, but if someone is unconscious after a crash with this black box in the car, someone is going to know.
“You see lots of cases where people crash on country lanes, where teenagers are often speeding about, and they’re not found until hours later and by then they have passed away because no one has found them.”
Black boxes helping youngsters become safer drivers
Black box policies, often known as telematics, reward safer and slower driving by monitoring driver behaviour and offer cheaper renewal premiums based on performance.
We have analysed the behaviour of some of our young drivers who have taken out FluxScore cover with us and the analysis shows it’s reducing the number of significant and gross speeders by up to 70%.
Ayesha, now driving a Toyota Yaris, added: “A lot of people think they’re limited by having a black box but it’s not limiting them, it’s actually helping them become a better and much safer driver. I don’t drive fast and I had a crash.
“No one wants a black box when they start driving because they want to go as fast as they can and not have their driving monitored. But I’d stand up for black boxes even before I had the accident. It’s extra safety, helps you save money, and I know it made my parents and grandparents feel a lot happier about me being on the road.”
Can Adrian Flux offer me black box insurance?
In a word, yes.
Adrian Flux’s FluxScore offering has a string of benefits for young drivers who are concerned about saving money while helping to ease parents’ safety-based worries.
If you drive well for a year, a saving of up to 60% can be achieved on your renewal if you take out black box insurance with Adrian Flux.