Seizure of unlicensed and uninsured vehicles

January 16, 2013 by  
Filed under insurance, Legal, Motoring, Transport

Seizure of vehicles

Seizure of cars in recent times, the Police have acquired some very remarkable and even draconian powers.  Let’s face it, people driving vehicles without a driving licence or insurance are a public danger and, in 2005, Parliament decided to take tougher action to combat this menace.  Motorists may not have even heard of the Road Traffic Act 1988 sections 165A and 165B.

These sections were inserted into the Road Traffic Act 1988 by the Serious Organised Crime and Police Act 2005 s.152.  They empower a Police Officer in Uniform to seizure of vehicles in certain circumstances  – e.g. if a driver is asked to produce evidence that he has a driving licence or that the vehicle is legally insured and the driver is unable to do so.

Find out more about seizure for not having insurance from Patterson Law, Driving with No Insurance offence specialists.

Reasonable force may be used to take seizure of  the vehicle.


Almost 32,000 vehicles of motorists found driving without insurance or a valid licence were impounded in the year to April – more than double the 14,230 seized in 2007.

Today road safety experts said this was a small proportion of the illegal drivers in the capital.

Figures from the Mayor’s office show that as recently as 2004 the Met did not impound any vehicles for driving without insurance or a licence.

By 2005 the number rose to 643 and by 2006 to 5,886 as police started using Automatic Number Plate Recognition systems.


Vehicles Causing an Obstruction

Vehicles that have been left on a road and are causing a wilful or unnecessary obstruction can be removed under the vehicle recovery scheme, without any cost being incurred by the police.

The driver must be reported by summons or issued with a fixed penalty notice and the WT 960 endorsed with the fact that the driver will be reported for an offence.

An OASIS log will be created, containing the officer in the case, the offence committed and the reason the vehicle has been recovered.

The recovery operator will recover the recovery fee and a daily storage charge, after the first 24 hours from the owner/driver. The police will not be liable for any charges.

Vehicles Recovered Following a Collision

Any vehicle involved in a collision will be removed from the scene. If the driver does not remove the vehicle within a reasonable time, the vehicle recovery scheme will be used and all charges met by the owner/driver.

If a vehicle involved in a collision is required by the police for examination, the initial recovery charges will be met by the owner or Insurance Company. The police will meet any storage charges after the first 7 days.



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