Rise in number of uninsured drivers on UK roads, MIB suggests

Written by Ellie

The number of claims made involving accidents with uninsured drivers has increased for the first time in over a decade.

Since 2004, claims against uninsured drivers have more than halved, from around 25,000 per year to roughly 11,000, thanks to continued commitment from the insurance industry, DVLA, the government and police to successfully tackle the problem.

However, in the past 12 months, the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) has seen claims against uninsured drivers rise by almost ten per cent.

It is unclear whether this is down to an increase in the number of people driving without insurance, the fact there are more cars on UK roads now or the effectiveness of enforcement.

There are around a million uninsured drivers on UK roads, figures from 2016 suggest. The law states that it is illegal to drive a vehicle on a road or in a public place without at least third-party insurance.

Punishments for uninsured drivers include six penalty points and a £300 fine. If the case goes to court, that fine could be unlimited. The police can even destroy the vehicle that has been driven uninsured.

Ashton West OBE, chief executive of the MIB, said drivers foregoing insurance had “a devastating impact on communities and families up and down the country”.

He commented: “We recognise the need to understand the increase in claims further so are currently undertaking a piece of work to explore what impact this could be having. Ultimately our message is the same as always – if you are driving without insurance, you will get caught.”

Mark Godfrey, insurance director at the RAC, reckons three increases to Insurance Premium Tax in two years had resulted in spiralling premiums that might be forcing some people – most likely younger drivers – to get behind the wheel without insurance.

“We have expressed concern that the government’s changes to the way in which life changing injury compensation payments are calculated are also forcing up premiums unnecessarily, and would call for the result of the review by Ministry of Justice which was due on August 3rd to be published as soon as possible,” he added.

Molly Benton, brand manager at Fuel Card Services, concluded: “The prospect of more uninsured drivers being on UK roads is very concerning. The government must take these findings seriously and provide reassurance to motorists that they will act if needed.”

Image: saravuth-photohut/iStock

Posted on 21st September 2017

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