The DVLA has hit back at accusations that a loophole in the law is allowing potentially danagerous cars back on the roads and accuses salvage operators of being the cause of the problem.
Last week on AM-online, Universal Salvage called on the DVLA to stop the 'no questions asked' practise of issuing duplicate log books (V5 registration documents), because it allows write-offs to be put back on the roads. The duplicates are also implicated in 'ringing' and 'cloning', where stolen vehicles are given new identities, often taken from already scrapped vehicles.
However, today the DVLA said that “many salvage operators are not complying” with a insurance industry voluntary code introduced in 1995 which required salvage dealers to notify it of all vehicles which had been/were to be scrapped or broken and not returned to the road.
The DVLA said that it was envisaged that following a declaration by the salvage dealers that a vehicle was identified as scrapped that any subsequent application for a registration document or a vehicle licence would be fraudulent. The DVLA, therefore, agreed to refer any applications for new documentation, for scrapped or broken vehicles notified by salvage dealers to the police for investigation and to refuse to issue any further documentation.
“However, it soon became clear that despite being notified of scrapping/breaking many vehicles were being repaired and returned to the road. In fact, more than 60% of vehicles referred to the police by the DVLA for investigation as potential 'ringers' turned out to be genuine, repaired vehicles. In these circumstances, once satisfied no criminal activity is involved the agency has no legal powers to refuse to re-license and/or issue a registration document. The vehicle must undergo the roadworthiness test before it is allowed back on the roas,” a DVLA spokesman said.
The DVLA urges the prospective vehicle purchaser to to carry out checks on a vehicle and the V5.