Number of vehicles seized for lacking insurance rises to 118,500 in 2015 in UK. Plus: penalties, costs and cinema video campaign.
Motor Insurance Bureau (MIB) confirmed that the number of vehicles seized for lacking insurance rose to 118,500 in 2015. This represented a rise of 2,500 compared to 2014.
Drivers that fall foul of the law face a £300 fine and £150 recovery fee. The subsequent cost of storage is £20 per-day and perpetrators receive 6 penalty points.
Furthermore, vehicles can only be claimed once insured and, if not collected, can be crushed. Around 30% - 40% of seized cars suffer this fate.
However, should the courts get involved; potential penalties rise to an unlimited fine and disqualification.
MIB is a not-for-profit body funded by the insurance industry.
Its purpose is to act: “As a financial safety net for innocent motorists involved in accidents when the perpetrators are uninsured or cannot be traced”.
The police use its database to confirm the status of vehicles, and it has a call centre should officers more additional information.
The Bureau recently ran its “Gone in Seconds” video campaign to emphasise the importance of having motor insurance. It was shown at 244 cinemas throughout London, the Midlands and the North. The video was supported by a social media presence, and 170 billboards.
Role of police
MIB's Chief Executive, Ashton West, said: “Our biggest concern is getting the message across to drivers under the age of 30. We know that for these drivers, their car is an important part of their social life and gives them credibility.”
Mr West continued: “The Gone in Seconds video we have launched tackles these issues and the role of the police in seizing uninsured cars. Worryingly, this year we have seen the number of claims to MIB rising week on week.”
Mr West concluded: “Every year, thousands of people are injured and killed by uninsured drivers. “They pose a real threat to other motorists and road users. To address this, we are working pro-actively with police forces across the UK.”
RAC Insurance Spokesman, Pete Williams, added: "With a worrying number of motorists driving on UK roads uninsured, the fact that the authorities are making a real effort to crackdown on and prosecute offenders offers some reassurance.”
He added: “The RAC's Report on Motoring 2015 revealed that 26% of motorists are concerned about uninsured and untaxed drivers, with 7% stating it as their top concern."
Are more driving without insurance?
We saw a steady downward trend since 2005, resulting in uninsured driver numbers to almost halve.
However, MIB reported that compensation pay-outs due to uninsured drivers increased from 21,972 in July 2014 to 24,213 in July this 2015. This represents a year-on-year monthly increase of 2,241 or 10.2%.
Findings show that a third of uninsured drivers caught, were under the age of 30.
After three years of falling insurance prices, premiums jumped by seven per cent (or £43) at the end of 2015, the largest increase in five years.
However, last week we revealed that the car insurance fraud pandemic is a myth, with the amount being paid out for claims falling by 29%.
The rise in prices could be causing motorists to ‘chance it’ and take to the road without insurance. MIB reports that 2.8% of all UK motorists are estimated to drive without insurance, which is about 1 million vehicles on the road.