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Motor Max: Who crashes cars is revealed in the stars; Zodiac signs define drivers' status.

Byline: With MIKE TORPEY

WE ARE driven by the stars rather than our skill behind the wheel, according to new research that says astrological signs might be as influential as roadside ones when it comes to drivers taking risks.

The zodiac correlation was drawn from research conducted by fleet management company,Interleasing, the main focus of which was to identify risky drivers within car fleets.

The research discovered that those born under the archer sign of Sagittarius were target material for risk, Taurians could be bullish and Geminis could often be perceived as in two minds while in the driving seat.

Written in the stars,or written off by them, the findings drew the conclusion that Mars colliding with Jupiter at the time of our birth might make us more likely to have our own collisions in later life.

The discoveries behind this ``highway horoscope'' reveal that there is something fishy about Piscean drivers as they are more than 40% more likely to get their fleet managers into seriously deep water than the average driver.

It could also be double trouble for the twin personality Gemini drivers who,although statistically are 40% less likely to have accidents, tend to have bigger, more expensive crunches when they do.

There was a double target for Sagittarians, whose characteristics included being ``irresponsible and superficial'' as they were 25% more likely to have an accident,and cost an average of pounds 600 to put it right.

The research shows that ``imaginative and sensitive'' Pisceans may be intuitive in everyday life, but not behind the wheel where their ``escapist and idealistic''' predispositions are reflected in their driving style.

As a result Pisceans came out as 40% more likely to have an accident than other drivers. The statistical findings also revealed that on average the Piscean driver costs the fleet insurance company around pounds 700 per claim.

Although not the highest figure, this does put them into a risk cosmos of their own when added to the other factors.

Friendly and humanitarian Aquarians are not only ``independent and intellectual'',but in accident terms they are the Steady Eddies of the Zodiac.

They have an average number of accidents and when they do report incidents, they tend to cost around pounds 600, which is the lowest claim on the star chart.

Diarmuid Fahy,accident services manager at Interleasing, says: ``This research shows that the driver is one of the biggest risks to business, and companies should keep a close eye on those whose vehicles frequently seem to be in the wars.

``Although the star sign analysis can be seen as light-hearted, there appears to be a strong correlation between date of birth and accidents.''
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Liverpool Echo (Liverpool, England)
Date:May 28, 2003
Words:447
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