Uninsured drivers are major motoring headache

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Uninsured drivers are rife on Britain’s roads, according to research by MoneySupermarket.com.

Britain’s number one comparison site found one in six motorists (16 per cent) have broken the law and driven a car they weren’t insured to drive.

Eight per cent admitted breaking the law by getting behind the wheel of their own car with no cover, while an additional six percent admit to having driven someone else’s car without insurance.

A further two per cent admit to driving their own car uninsured in between renewing their insurance policy.

Of those who admitted to driving without insurance, 18 per cent say it was because they didn’t know they needed insurance when behind the wheel. Over a third of these people (38 per cent) blamed being in between insurance policies as the reason for driving uninsured, and five per cent simply couldn’t be bothered to arrange insurance cover.

Seven per cent said there is no point having insurance as they don’t believe they will crash and six per cent simply can’t afford the insurance cover.

Car insurance expert Peter Harrison said: “Year-on-year we are still seeing a worrying number of drivers prepared to hit the road without insurance, despite the introduction of new Continuous Insurance Enforcement (CIE) rules last year.

“It’s illegal to get behind the wheel without adequate cover and should you be involved in a crash when not insured, you could face thousands of pounds in liability, a conviction, including six points on your license, as well as fines of up to £5,000.

“Uninsured drivers cost the insurance industry £500 million each year, which as a result adds an average of £30 to every motorist’s premium.

“The rising cost of motoring makes shopping around for the best deal crucial to ensure you aren’t paying over the odds for your car insurance. The average saving using MoneySupermarket is £375, so I urge everyone to do their research and not automatically accept their renewal without checking there isn’t a better alternative.”

In a bid to protect motorists from uninsured drivers, the new Continuous Insurance Enforcement (CIE)3 was introduced in 2011 which means anyone who is registered as an owner of a vehicle, which isn’t registered as SORN (Statutory Off Road Notification), MUST have valid car insurance for it or face a penalty.

According to the research, younger motorists were found to be the biggest risk takers, with 29 per cent of 18-34 year olds admitting to driving a vehicle they weren’t insured to, compared to just six per cent of over 55s.

The research also revealed men were twice as likely to be tempted to take to the roads uninsured than women, with a fifth (22 per cent) having driven without any insurance compared to 10 per cent of female drivers.