What do you do when you are stuck in a three year car loan deal and you hate the car you are driving? You just crash it and then claim from the insurance. At least that is what a growing number of Britons seem to be doing.
A list of "Cash for Crash" hotspots - where drivers fraudulently stage accidents to make false insurance claims - have been published by insurer Direct Line.
The list is topped by a junction in Barking on the A406 eastbound on the eastern outskirts of London, says the company. Scammers are, however, not limited to London; they are increasingly committing this type of fraud in Herts, St Albans, Staffs and Little Aston - which are all on the top ten list.
According to the company these fraudulent claims (of which there were a total of 30,000 last year) spelt nothing but trouble for honest drivers and often endangered lives. A typical scenario is for a fraudster to make an "emergency stop" at a busy roundabout or busy slip road, forcing the car behind to smash into his or her car. In rural areas these staged accidents usually happen at higher speeds, resulting in bigger damage and more substantial claims.
Often organised criminals would target the same stretch of road a number of times in a row. This happened more than once at a particular spot in Warrington, Lancs. The company quotes an example where the same car was involved in three "accidents" here within a matter of two hours - after also being involved in an "accident" at a nearby roundabout earlier.
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