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Could Uninsured Drivers be Denied Petrol in the Future?
Think your insurance premium is high? How would you feel if you learnt that approximately £30 per year that you are paying to insure your car is there to cover accidents caused by uninsured drivers?
If that doesn’t leave you fuming, it can only be because your car is uninsured! In the UK, a massive 1 in every 25 cars does not have up to date insurance, making us Brits one of the most under-insured nations in Europe.
Added to that, approximately 160 people are killed and a further 23,000 injured every year in the UK by drivers who are either uninsured or untraceable.
It’s reached the point where the government really needs to act, not just to bring down insurance premiums for the rest of us but to protect the safety of all the drivers out there on our roads!
Image: Brizzle born and bred
They’ve come up a potential solution which they’re already in talks with major fuel companies to move forward – using petrol station CCTV cameras to scan number plates and check for uninsured vehicles!
It sounds like a big move but the reality is that it will be relatively easy to set up. The technology is already in place – when you refuel in the UK, you already have to wait a couple of seconds before the petrol or diesel is released whilst CCTV cameras read your number plate and check it against a list of petrol thieves.
It shouldn’t take too much longer to also run the plate past the DVLA database and check that it’s insured – and possibly even that it’s taxed too.
So, what happens if you get caught out? The Government are proposing to deny fuel to anyone with an uninsured vehicle so you simply won’t be able to fill up. Oh, and the police will be notified too, so if you don’t have enough fuel left in the tank to get out of there you’re going to get caught for sure!
It seems like a sensible plan that most people are backing; uninsured drivers are unlikely to drive knowing how easily they can be caught, and even if they do hit the road their tank has to get empty at some point.
With fewer uninsured drivers on the road, insurance premiums should drop and, of course, the roads will be a safer place to be.
Image: Lee Jordan
However, there are those who are lobbying against the proposal, pointing out potential flaws in the scheme such as abuse against petrol station staff – Brian Madderson of RMI Petrol voiced his opinion, saying “this proposal will increase the potential for conflict. Our cashiers are not law enforcers”.
There’s also the problem of how quickly (or not) the DVLA database is updated. What if you were to renew your insurance on the Saturday before a bank holiday? The DVLA would most likely not receive your updated information until Tuesday at the earliest, possibly leaving you stranded without petrol in between.
What do you think, is the proposal to introduce CCTV checks for uninsured drivers at petrol stations a plan that’s fantastic or flawed?
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