A recent motor insurance survey has found that almost half of all young motorists are carrying a weapon in their car because they are insecure about crime.
Nearly 60 per cent say that they had previously had their vehicles vandalised, and nearly 50 per cent said that they have had something stolen from their car.
Motor insurance companies said that they were shocked by the results of the survey and have warned young drivers that the consequences of taking the law into their own hands could be harsh.
Almost a third of young people said that they carried a baseball bat in their car, and nearly one in ten said they carried a sharp blade such as a knife or sword. Young drivers also told motor insurance researchers that they kept crowbars, wheel braces and tyre levers to hand to grab if they felt seriously threatened.
"It is extremely worrying that almost half of young drivers are prepared to risk their own safety and a police conviction for carrying an offensive weapon, to protect themselves and their car from car thieves and vandals," said a motor insurance spokesman.
"The protection of your car is not a good enough reason for young motorists to carry baseball bats and knives in the boot. Get rid of them now," he added.
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