Uninsured drivers costing thousands

UNINSURED drivers in the Ipswich area are costing other motorists thousands of pounds by bumping up their premiums, it emerged today.The latest figures show that between November 1 and December 1 2004 61 drivers were caught with no insurance in the Ipswich area.

UNINSURED drivers in the Ipswich area are costing other motorists thousands of pounds by bumping up their premiums, it emerged today.

The latest figures show that between November 1 and December 1 2004 61 drivers were caught with no insurance in the Ipswich area.

Figures for the whole year are unavailable but it is believed the total number of drivers caught could be over 500.

Driving with no insurance is often thought of as a victimless crime but a recent survey shows that, nationally, the Motor Insurance Bureau paid out £500m to the victims of uninsured motorists last year.

This is paid out of the premiums of honest motorists.

The survey, by the RAC Foundation and Max Power, found that approximately five per cent of motorists now drive uninsured, which adds £30-£60 to the premiums of other motorists.

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As well as the financial costs, people who drive without insurance are also:

six times more likely to drive a non road-worthy vehicle

up to nine times more likely to be involved in an accident

more likely to be involved in a hit and run collision

three times more likely to have been convicted of driving without due care and attention

ten times more likely to have been convicted of drink driving.

Other worrying statistics emerging from the survey revealed that 4pc of people think it is ok to drive without insurance because premiums are too high, and 77pc of people know someone who has driven without insurance.

A spokesman for the Crown Prosecution Service in Suffolk, said: "It is common sense that if a driver

has no insurance it could be because the car either has no tax or no MoT, either scenario indicates the vehicle might not be road worthy.

"A driver without insurance might also be less likely to stop after an accident due to the heavy financial penalty they would receive from a civil court.

"As with anybody committing a crime in Suffolk offenders can expect to prosecuted and put in front of a court to answer for their actions."

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