Crash for cash: do you live in a scam hotspot?

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Author: | Updated: 25 Sep 2017 13:35

The Insurance Fraud Bureau (IFB) has released data revealing the UK’s top crash for cash hotspots, with Birmingham topping the chart for the second time this year.

Its data revealed the UK’s top 30 postcode districts where crash for cash scams have been found to occur most often, with many of the at-risk areas found in the midlands and north of England.

Birmingham postcodes have topped the crash for cash league table...

Crash for cash scams occur when fraudsters and criminal gangs make false claims on car insurance, usually as a result of a minor or staged collision with other road users. According to IFB figures, these scams cost insurance companies up to £340m per year.

Ben Fletcher, director of the IFB, said: “These scams may seem to some to be a harmless way to beat the system and get an easy pay out with minimal risk.

“The reality is that not only do those people now stand a very good chance of getting caught and facing the consequences, but these scams put other motorist’s lives at risk.”

Where are the hotspots?

Motorists in Birmingham are most likely to suffer a crash for cash incident, with 10 of the city’s postcodes found in the top 30. The north suffers more than the south too, with Manchester, Oldham and Bradford all featuring in the top ten.

Here’s the top ten crash for cash locations – including postcodes – from around the UK:

Rank Location and Postcode
1. Birmingham (B8)
2. Birmingham (B6)
3. Birmingham (B10)
4. Bradford (BD9)
5. Bradford (BD8)
6. Manchester (M8)
7. Bradford (BD7)
8. Birmingham (B25)
9. Oldham (OL8)
10. Birmingham (B11)

Looking at the full picture below however, shows that drivers in the midlands and north are by far more likely to suffer crash for cash scams, with areas of North London and Enfield the only southern postcodes to make the list.

Fletcher added: “These hotspots may be the worst affected areas for these types of scams, but crash for cash collisions can happen anywhere, so it’s imperative that road users are aware of them, exercise appropriate caution and if they believe they’ve been a victim, report it as soon as they can.”

Here’s the top 30 in full…

Top 30 postcodes for crash for cash – 27 of which are found in the midlands and north of England.

How to avoid crash for cash scams

The nature of crash for cash makes them hard for motorists to avoid, but the IFB’s advice is to remain vigilant to the tell-tale signs. These include:

  • the other driver being far too calm for someone that’s been involved in a car accident;
  • the driver having already written down their insurance details prior to the accident;
  • any claimed injuries appearing to be completely at odds with the force of the impact.

Are dashcams the answer to fraudulent motor insurance claims?

Here’s our top five highs and lows of owning a dashcam

The rising popularity of dash cams is also helping drive down the number of crash for cash claims too, and is a very effective way of quashing the threat – no one can argue with video footage.

If you think you’ve been involved in a crash for cash scam, it’s important to let your insurance company know and provide as much evidence as you can. More info can be found on the IFB’s website here.

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