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UK motorists carry half of recommended items in their car, ClickMechanic study reveals


New research shows what motorists think they are required to keep in their cars, and what they actually prioritise in case of emergency or breakdown. 

Online car repair marketplace, Clickmechanic.com, questioned its extensive customer database on their knowledge of what items are required to be carried in vehicles at all times – despite UK motorists not being legally required to carry anything at all. Looking to find out how motorists stay prepared in case of emergency or breakdown, ClickMechanic found that drivers typically carry their driving licence and a first-aid kit.

Andrew Jervis, co-founder and CEO of ClickMechanic, says: “It’s always sensible to carry your driving licence, first-aid kit, MOT certificate and insurance certificate as standard. Many countries legally require drivers to carry certain items, and this – combined with the fact that many vehicles carry various non-essential items as standard, such as a spare wheel or basic tools – may make some drivers believe that there is a legal requirement to carry particular items.”

In the off-chance that a driver is asked by a police officer to produce their licence or either of the certificates, it has to be shown at a police station within seven days. Failure to do so is an offence that motorists can be prosecuted for.

Jervis adds: “It’s also worth taking into account other seasonal and circumstantial factors. For example, if you drive long distances in rural areas, then during the cold, winter months it’s sensible to keep an extra blanket in the car, snacks and water in case you were to get caught out by a snowstorm and your car breaks down. Generally, it’s about being diligent and aware of the conditions you could face.”

ClickMechanic’s research further revealed that the majority of motorists are likely to carry car jacks and torches, and that most understand that you are legally required to wear driving glasses or contacts if you need them to meet the minimum eyesight standard. On the opposite side of the spectrum, nearly all motorists correctly believe that jump start cables are not legally required, along with tool boxes and towing equipment.

So, what exactly do UK motorists think is legally required or not? And what do people actually carry in their cars, compared to what is generally recommended? ClickMechanic reveals the findings below.

Top recommended items for UK motorists

– Driving licence

– MOT certificate

– Insurance certificate

– First-aid kit


Top five items prioritised by UK motorists

– Car jack (81%)

– Torch (59%)

– First-aid kit (56%)

– Warning triangle (51%)

– Driving licence (49%)


Top 5 things UK motorists think you DO have to legally carry

– Driving glasses (49%)

– Driving licence (42%)

– Warning triangle (38%)

– Car jack (38%)

– Insurance certificate (31%)


Top 5 things motorists think you DON’T have to legally carry

– Jump start cable (96%)

– Tool box (95%)

– Towing equipment (93%)

– Fire extinguisher (91%)

– Torch (91%)


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