Fleet operators are being advised by the Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) to act with caution following a report released that has released new figures, exposing the worst affected postal districts for ‘Crash for Cash’ scams.
ACSS recommend that it is essential for your vehicles to have in-vehicle cameras systems for the safety of your drivers and your business.
The hotspots analysis confirms Birmingham remains the most prevalent area in the UK for the dangerous scam, followed by postcodes in Bradford, Manchester, London, and Luton.
Fleet operators are being advised to proactively protect their vehicles and drivers, following a crash for cash report from the Insurance Frau
d Bureau (IFB).
The IFB report identifies more than 170,000 insurance claims potentially linked to cash for crash gangs, out of 2.7m claims made between October 2019 and December 2020.
Freddie Lovejoy, fell victim to a Crash for Cash claim. He said “You never expect a crime like ‘Crash for Cash’ to happen until it does, and I would strongly recommend drivers read up about it. There can be physical and mental impacts when involved in a car incident, and to think criminals do it on purpose is scary.”
“At the time I was using a dashcam which provided crucial evidence for the case, so that would be my top tip to anyone. I was lucky to get support and justice, but others might not be so fortunate, so creating more awareness for the public is important.”
IFB investigations have found single gangs can be behind thousands of orchestrated collisions in some areas, with the combined value of their fraudulent claims running into the millions.
Installing a camera system has saved our clients thousands of pounds. More recently, Mark from Watts Way Travel said “ I have to say that I was always put off getting CCTV due to expense, but I got over that and now I can say that it has paid for itself yesterday as there was a huge crash and it proved the innocence of my driver, I cannot think what would have happened if we did not have it installed!”
Keep a good distance
Always keep a good distance from the vehicle in front. According to the DVSA (Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency) the time required to safely stop is:
- 2 seconds in dry conditions.
- 4 seconds in wet conditions.
- 20 seconds in icy or snowy conditions.
- Drive safe and stick to the highway code.
- Look ahead to spot any potential hazards including unusual driving behaviour.
- Focus on vehicles and not just their lights, as fraudsters often disable brake lights.
- Be cautious when pulling out of a side road, especially if encouraged by another driver.
- If other drivers or their passengers are behaving suspiciously, or the condition of their vehicle is poor (such as rear dents), stay calm and keep back.
Know the signs of a ‘Crash for Cash’
- The driver or their passengers appear to be unphased after the collision.
- The driver or their passengers appear to exaggerate injuries.
- Pre-written insurance information is handed over.
Reporting ‘Crash for Cash’
Remember to note as much information as possible about the driver, any passengers and circumstances of the collision. This can include written information, pictures, dashcam footage and noting CCTV in the area.
Evidence of a ‘Crash for Cash’ scam can be reported to the IFB’s confidential and anonymous Cheatline (powered by CrimeStoppers) on 0800 422 0421 or at www.insurancefraudbureau.org/cheatline