Cleveland and Durham Support National Operation to Tackle Uninsured Drivers
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Roads policing officers are joining a national campaign targeting uninsured drivers in partnership with the Motor Insurers Bureau (MIB).
Forces around the UK are joining the operation, to remove uninsured drivers from the roads and help protect road users.
The operation, named Operation Drive Insured, takes place for one week (26 Oct – 1 Nov) and will see officers out on the roads of Cleveland and Durham to stop uninsured drivers using the roads.
Uninsured and untraced drivers cause nearly one in every five road traffic collisions nationally. Sadly, 130 people are killed and 26,000 are left injured by uninsured drivers nationally, which equates to one casualty every twenty minutes. Evidence states that uninsured drivers are six times more likely to be involved in a fatal road traffic collision.
Uninsured drivers are often involved in a wide range of criminal activities. Every year there are hundreds of incidents where an uninsured driver is found without a driving licence or using an untaxed or stolen vehicle. Records also show a number of offenders are caught driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
MIB supports victims of uninsured and hit and run drivers by providing a last resort for claims and compensation. The annual cost to compensate these victims comes to over £100 million and is funded by the motor insurance premiums of all law-abiding motorists.
The number of claims for compensation from victims of uninsured drivers have fallen 26% since 2016. However, with so many people suffering financial hardship due to the disruption of Covid-19, there are growing concerns that this could result in more people breaking the law and driving without insurance.
Chief Inspector Graham Milne, from the Cleveland and Durham Specialist Operations Unit, said: “Having no insurance puts road users in danger and it won’t be tolerated. Uninsured drivers are often committing not only road traffic offences, but often also secondary offences, such as drugs offences. Denying uninsured drivers the use of the roads can prevent this.
“Drivers found without insurance face having their vehicle seized on the spot, six penalty points on their licence, a £300 fine and possible prosecution through court.”
Anna Fleming, Chief Operating Officer at MIB, said: “We’ve made great strides in getting more people to drive insured in recent years, but the sad reality is with Covid-19 putting so many people under financial strain, uninsured driving levels could creep up. Everyone suffers the consequences of uninsured driving. We’re fully committed to our partnership with the police so we can get as many people as possible to drive insured to make roads safer and fairer for everyone.”
Drivers can check if their vehicle appears as insured on the MID for free.
Tips on finding more affordable car insurance can be found on the Association of British Insurers (ABI) website.
If a member of the public suspects a person is driving without insurance, they can report it to police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at www.crimestoppers-uk.org.