New police road campaign

Tayside Police along with all other Scottish Police Forces are to take part in a national campaign intended to provide education and enforcement in respect of unlicenced and uninsured driving.

The campaign began on Tuesday and will end on Thursday. Other offences which impact on road safety, such as speeding, failing to wear seat belts and using a mobile phone whilst driving will continue to be targeted.

With the latest estimates suggesting that there approximately 1.2 million uninsured drivers in the United Kingdom, it is vital that the enforcement agencies together with the law abiding public, work in partnership to identify vehicles which are being used illegally.

Using a vehicle on the public roads without the appropriate insurance has significant implications and should be apparent to us all. For example, law abiding motorists premiums are inflated by £30 per year to compensate for those that choose not to insure the vehicles they are using, an additional financial burden that most of us could do without, especially in the current financial climate.

Similarly, when a collision does occur, the costs incurred are increased when an uninsured driver is involved. Where that collision involves serious injury or death the physical and mental implications are immeasurable without having to deal with protracted legal processes.

Since June 2006, Tayside Police have been utilising powers provided by Section 165A of the Road Traffic Act 1988, giving police officers the power to seize vehicles being driven without a driving licence or insurance. In this time, Tayside Police have seized over 4000 vehicles with over 1480 of those vehicles being subsequently crushed.

Driving without insurance will result in the driver being issued with a £200 endorsable conditional offer of fixed penalty and six points on their licence.

Driving without a licence will result in the driver being issued with a £60 endorsable conditional offer of fixed penalty and three penalty points on their licence.

Any vehicle seized under these powers will only be released on payment of the full recovery and storage costs, which is currently £150 recovery plus £20 per day storage fee, and presentation of a valid insurance certificate and/or driving licence.