Our latest figures suggest that it is drivers of mid-range higher volume vehicles, often the popular Vauxhall, Ford and Volkswagen models, that continue to be the greatest offenders of insurance evasion. However, a staggering number of offenders in 2011 were drivers of prestige, high value vehicles, including five Ferraris, two worth £151,000 and £115,000 each, an Audi R8, a Bentley and a number of Lamborghinis.
Nearly 1 in 10 of the 60,000 uninsured cars seized by the police in 2011 and checked with HPI CrushWatch, had outstanding finance recorded against them. Working in partnership with the Finance & Leasing Association (FLA), we created HPI CrushWatch in direct response to the FLA’s initiative to clamp down on uninsured drivers. The scheme brings together motor lenders and police to reclaim illegal cars, rather than having the vehicles scrapped.
“There are an estimated 1.4 million uninsured motorists on the UK roads, illustrating the threat facing law abiding road users and the finance providers who own the offending cars,” comments Daniel Burgess, our Managing Director here at HPI. “In 2011 HPI CrushWatch alerted finance companies to the seizure of over £31 million worth of vehicles they owned, thereby protecting their assets from the crusher. It’s very interesting to learn how many of these vehicles are being driven by people the majority of us would consider to be in a position to afford insurance, yet have been caught persistently avoiding paying premiums.”
Forty-three of the UK’s 52 police forces actively use HPI CrushWatch, illustrating its effectiveness in the clampdown against insurance evaders. Our 2011 figures show that West Yorkshire, Strathclyde and Merseyside police forces have notched up the highest total value of seized cars, indicating these regions have the greatest number of insurance offenders on their roads, followed closely by Hertfordshire and Lancashire.
As part of the HPI CrushWatch service, every vehicle a finance company registers with HPI will be automatically checked by participating police enforcement agencies if they are seized. Finance companies signing up to HPI CrushWatch will be alerted when any vehicle they have an interest in is seized. This allows them to decide whether to recover the vehicle for selling on to recoup bad debt, or allow it to be destroyed.
Daniel Burgess concludes, “Available to all finance companies, not just HPI clients, HPI CrushWatch uses HPI Check data to help the motor finance industry reclaim illegal cars. With no annual fees, subscribers only pay for the alerts they receive, offering finance companies a powerful weapon to protect their assets, whilst helping the police to safeguard innocent motorists from becoming victims of uninsured drivers.”