Uninsured drivers targeted in police crackdown
Police in England, Wales and Northern Ireland have launched a crackdown on uninsured driving.
‘Operation Drive Insured’ will see an increase in enforcement activity throughout October to identify drivers without valid insurance and seize their vehicles. It follows a similar operation by Police Scotland in September.
According to the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB), every 20 minutes someone is injured in a collision caused by an uninsured or untraced ‘hit and run’ driver, and 130 people are killed by such drivers each year.
During the month-long campaign police will access the MIB’s Motor Insurance Database, a central record of all active UK motor insurance policies which enables officers to easily check passing vehicles’ registration plates to see if they appear to be insured. If a driver denies being uninsured, MIB liaises with insurers to confirm whether valid insurance exists or not.
Uninsured motorists can have their vehicle seized and potentially crushed, in addition to a £300 fixed penalty notice and six points on their licence. If the case goes to court, they face an unlimited fine and a driving ban.
Last year 132,804 uninsured vehicles were seized across the UK.
Detective Superintendent Andy Cox of the Metropolitan Police’s Roads and Transport Policing Command commented: “Statistically, uninsured drivers are more likely to be involved in a serious collision, flee the scene of a collision and be criminally active. The impacts of such driving and actions can be utterly devastating for the lawful driver.
“We are therefore targeting uninsured drivers in order to support road safety, deny criminals use of the roads and support the lawful road user who face paying higher insurance premiums for those who seek to evade paying.
“Ordinarily we seize just short of 2,000 uninsured vehicles a month; the consequences for drivers are significant — six points on their licence, a £300 fine, vehicle recovery fees, storage fees and future higher premiums. The message is clear: drive lawfully and in doing so keep a clean licence.”
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