So the latest way to scam the average law-abiding motorist is, it seems, not to crash for cash but to flash for cash. And we’re not talking here about dishevelled-looking men wearing raincoats, hanging around in the undergrowth.
The scam in this case involves innocent drivers being flashed to be let out of junctions, and then being driven into by the person who flashed. The gangs then put in false injury claims, often including claims for people who weren’t even in the car. These toe-rags also put in false claims for time off work – not that they know how to spell that particular word – as well as vehicle storage, recovery, vastly over-inflated repair bills and even replacement car hire.
In all, it’s estimated that the crash and/or flash for cash scammers cost the insurance industry nigh on £400 million a year. To you and me, that means we pay about £75 a year more for our car insurance than we otherwise would, just to pick up their tab.
Least pleasant of all, perhaps, is that the scammers tend to target the most vulnerable motorists (not much of a surprise, thinking about it). So they go for mums with kids on board, or elderly people who are on their own but driving new and expensive cars. Groups of burly-looking lads driving battered white vans are not, you’ll be amazed to discover, at the top of their list.