Thursday, 13 September 2012

Police Crush Uninsured Drivers Hopes of Romance, And His Car.

By Ben Aulakh

A man from Birmingham, whose car became the millionth uninsured vehicle to be crushed by West Midlands police, also saw his chances of romance suffer the same sad fate.

The 45 year old from the Bordesley Green area of the city had his Ford Fiesta seized by officers, as part of an on-going operation to rid the county’s roads of uninsured vehicles.

However, when stopped by police the man had begged officers not to impound his car as he needed it for a date he was going on later in the day.

Despite his desperate, the car was towed away and held in a secure compound for two weeks ready to be returned as soon as he presented the relevant documents; when this failed to happen, the decision was taken to crush the car.

Chief Inspector Chris Edwards, head of the force’s Traffic Unit saw the car being crushed.

He said, “In the West Midlands we continue to adopt a multi-agency approach in partnership with the Motor Insurers’ Bureau, to reduce the number of uninsured vehicles on our roads.

“West Midlands Police relentlessly enforces the law in respect of uninsured driving, which has led to a seizure of 5,881 vehicles between January and July 2012.”

“In simple terms we seize on average 27 vehicles every day of the week or the equivalent of 1 an hour, a 5% increase on seizures for the same period in 2011 and 10% on the same period in 2010.”

Around 30 per cent of seized vehicles are never reclaimed and the remainder are only allowed back on the road once they are legal.

Recent figures from the Motor Insurers Bureau demonstrate that the West Midlands has 12 of the UK’s top 20 postcodes for uninsured drivers – 11 of these are in Birmingham and one is in Wolverhampton.

Some of the reasons cited by motorists living in these hotspot areas, include: the cost of motor insurance, not understanding the law and penalties, and a belief that they’ll get away with it.

Neil Drane, Head of Database Services at Motor Insurers’ Bureau said, “Since the millionth uninsured vehicle was seized two weeks ago, the driver could have received six penalty points to their licence.

“They also might have had to pay a £200 fixed penalty, £150 of removal charges and a £20 daily storage fee.”

At the time their vehicle is seized drivers are also summonsed to court for the offence of driving uninsured, where they are likely to receive significant fines and penalty points on their driving licence.

Uninsured drivers cost law abiding motorists approximately £30 extra on their premiums each year.

In addition to any injuries, those hit by uninsured drivers in collision not only face the inconvenience of having to organise insurance claims, but also lost no claims bonuses and higher premiums.

Chf Insp Edwards added, “The crushing of the millionth uninsured vehicle is a motoring milestone in the fight against uninsured driving and is proof that the law is catching up with uninsured motorists who are estimated to kill 130 people and injure 26,500 every year.”

It is not known whether the man whose car was crushed today made his romantic rendezvous.

All drivers can check their vehicle is recorded on the Motor Insurance Database for free by visiting:

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