New analysis of crash data has revealed the areas where motorists are most likely to be involved in a crash with an uninsured driver.
The study of figures from the Motor Insurers’ Bureau contains bad news for drivers in the North West, West Midlands and London, where the number of such incidents is far greater than the national average.
The research analysed the data by parliamentary constituency and found that in the worst area – Bradford West – drivers were twice as likely to be involved in a crash with an uninsured driver.
Close behind it, in Birmingham Ladywood and Birmingham Hodge Hill the rate of collisions with uninsured drivers are 96 per cent and 94 per cent above average, respectively.
Of the ten constituencies with the worst records, four are in the West Midlands, three are in the North West, two are in Yorkshire and one is in London.
At the opposite end of the scale, Scotland has the lowest proportion of collisions caused by uninsured drivers, with 16 of the bottom 20 constituencies. West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine (92 per cent lower), Orkney and Shetland (91 per cent lower) and Gordon (88 per cent lower) recorded the lowest relative numbers of collisions caused by uninsured constituents.
The Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS), which carried out the research with Direct Line Insurance warned that uninsured drivers were more likely to be involved in other illegal behaviour.
Its executive director, David Davies, said: ‘Uninsured driving is not just a financial matter. There are strong links between driving uninsured, driving dangerously, being involved in crashes, hit and run, and wider criminality. It is vital to break this chain and tackling uninsured driving may be the best way.’
Steve Barrett, head of car insurance at Direct Line, commented: ‘It’s essential that motorists buy the right insurance to not only protect their own vehicle, but to ensure that other drivers, passengers and pedestrians are protected as well in the event of vehicle damage or injury.
‘When people are unfortunate enough to be in collision with an uninsured driver they could suffer severe injury or financial loss and either scenario could turn their world upside down.’
The MIB, which acts as a last resort for victims of uninsured drivers said it received 11,000 claims last year and the annual bill for compensation comes to more than £1 million.
Its chief public affairs officer, Nick Robbins said: ‘We estimate there are one million uninsured drivers on our roads that kill and injure thousands of people every year.
‘We want drivers to consider how they’d feel if it was their parent, child or sibling whose life has been significantly changed because of someone’s reckless decision to get behind the wheel of a car without insurance.’
Driving without insurance carries a fixed penalty of £300 and six penalty points. If the case goes to court they could face a driving ban and unlimited fine and police can also seize offenders’ cars and have them crushed.