Petrol and diesel prices surge as 'risky' hypermiling drivers will make roads more dangerous

A petrol pump in a car

Drivers could face more dangerous roads as fuel prices rise

Felix Reeves

By Felix Reeves

Published: 22/08/2023

- 11:36

Updated: 22/08/2023

- 11:38

Drivers may be more likely to perform dangerous fuel-saving tips with prices rising

British roads could become more dangerous as the price of fuel continues to surge after months of falling costs.

July marked the second consecutive month of rising petrol prices with diesel drivers also dealing with languishing prices at the pump.

Within the space of a month, the average cost of a litre of petrol has risen by five pence, much to the dismay of hard-pressed drivers.

This marks a dramatic increase in prices with Britons seeing an increase of two pence between the start of June and end of July.

A fuel pump

Petrol and diesel prices peaked last year with diesel almost reaching £2 a litre


Average diesel prices have also grown, with the UK average now standing at 152.41p per litre.

Supermarkets are offering slightly cheaper prices as drivers could save around 3.5p for each litre they buy, although this may not be enough for many drivers.

Experts are now warning that roads could become more dangerous in the event that petrol and diesel prices continue to rise.

Bryn Brooker, head of road safety at Nextbase, has urged drivers to remain safe as some may change their motoring habits to cope with the dramatic price jumps.

He said: "This surge in petrol and diesel prices will hurt drivers and make roads less safe, as cash-strapped drivers turn to 'hypermiling' techniques that could see them lose control.

"It's an increasingly expensive time to be a motorist. Petrol prices have surged back to where they were in February, insurance costs are up, and a huge chunk of motorists in London are about to be slapped with a £12.50 daily driving fee when the ULEZ comes into force at the end of the month."

Drivers will be hit hardest at motorway service stations where prices are massively inflated thanks to the captive audience who need fuel during long journeys.

Diesel motorists are forced to fork out an average of 22.5p more per litre for a total cost per litre of 174.93p.

Petrol motorists will see an even larger price difference at 23.2p per litre, with an average tank for a 60-litre family car costing £104.22.

Bryn Brooker added: "Higher prices can lead to drivers engaging in dangerous hypermiling techniques like coasting or drafting behind another vehicle.

“These moves are risky and simply not worth it. If you do want to save fuel, more sensible moves like removing excess weight from your car and making sure you slow down a long time before a red light are your best bet."

One of his suggestions was to install a dash cam to potentially save thousands of pounds in the event of an accident.


A fuel pump

Fuel prices are at the highest level since February


Drivers could even save up to 30 per cent on their car insurance as companies will view the motorist as taking action to improve their safety.

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