snowy roadsAndrew Matthews/PA Wire

The bout of freezing weather currently affecting the UK has led to a nine per cent rise in accidents compared to normal winter levels.

According Accident Exchange, incidents have been recorded right across the UK including in London and the south east, northern England and Scotland.

The firm says many of the accidents reported were the result of losing control in icy conditions, mostly due to insufficient gaps to vehicles in front.

The accident specialist urges drivers to be more cautious than usual.

Apparently this week nearly 10 per cent more motorists than normal will be counting the cost of their mishaps – the average outlay for repairs alone is £2,185 or, for the at-fault driver, the crash can result in the loss of their no claims bonus, an unwelcome blow before Christmas.

Peter Pellegrini of Accident Exchange said: "Driving in harsh, wintry conditions can be an absolute minefield.

"Great care is needed to avoid losing control when it is icy, so drivers need to allow extra time for their journeys. Nobody wants to have an accident but especially not during the festive period."

Read our guide to winter tyres here