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Winter sports injuries increasing in number and cost

The average value of a winter sport-related travel claim has doubled (in the past two years), according to new analysis from Sainsbury’s Finance.

The key findings of the research:

  • The average claim has increased by 47.6%
  • The number of claims made is also increasing, with the number of winter sports injuries up 8% in the USA and 4% in Europe compared with claims made in winter 08/09
  • Italy has seen the greatest increase in the average claim value where it has increased 106% to £1400
  • Knee injuries were the most common injury, accounting for 37% of winter sport related claims
  • Leg, hip and pelvis injuries were the most costly, with an average claim of £10,000.

Analysis of expenses paid on winter sports injury claims reveals that currently the average claim in the USA and Canada during 09/10 was around £4,750, the highest claim value compared with the other top winter sports destinations.

Stuart McKeggie of Sainsbury's says, “Even the most accomplished skiers and snowboarders can get themselves into a tricky spot, racking up huge medical bills from winter sports-related injuries. You need travel insurance to pay for any private medical treatment, to be airlifted from the slopes or repatriated back home."

The most common travel insurance claim related to winter sports activity is for a knee injury (37%) followed by a shoulder injury (15%) and a wrist and hand injury (10%).

The most expensive injuries to treat are those relating to the upper leg/hip/pelvis, where the average cost of a claim is £10,000. In one particular case a pelvis injury sustained in the United States resulted in a £30,000 insurance claim after the patient had been sent home with a medical escort.

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Winter sports injuries increasing in number and cost
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