It is well documented that the Department for Transport (DfT) have been working together with vehicle insurance companies and other interested parties to clamp down on the number of motorists who will not comply with basic motoring laws and regulations. Latest estimates show that 4% of drivers in the UK have no motor insurance of any kind, and road safety experts believe uninsured drivers make up a big part of those motorists who leave accident scenes before anyone can ask questions. Last year approximately 150 people were killed and over 20,000 injured by drivers of vehicles who have not yet been traced.
The latest plan to stop such blatant law breaking involves the placement of CCTV cameras above the forecourts of fuel filling stations. The cameras will operate in conjunction with the systems already in place at many garages that use Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) to catch out fuel thieves. The Government plan is that the cameras will scan the number plate of the car and cross check it with data bases that hold the registration details of uninsured or untaxed cars. If the system picks up any anomaly with the number plate then the fuel pump will not flow. The DfT believe this could drastically reduce the number of illegal cars on the roads of the UK.
It is expected that most motorhome insurance companies will welcome the plan but it is far from certain that owners of fuel stations will be so enthusiastic. Already the body that represents fuel sellers in the UK has questioned the wisdom of the plan, saying such a policy could put forecourt attendants in danger of being attacked by frustrated motorists. Other critics say the plan could see the theft of fuel from other vehicles and the damage done to them in the process actually see motor insurance premiums rise. However, it is certain that something must be done to curb the problem of uninsured motorists and the DfT cannot be faulted for at least coming up with ideas.