Nearly 800 UK write-offs hit Irish roads in June

Over 10% of all imported cars didn't pass the muster abroad...

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Image: RollingNews.ie

Almost 30 vehicles that were written off as unroadworthy in the United Kingdom were imported into Ireland every day last month, according to the Irish Independent.

The figures compiled by car-history website MyWheels.ie on behalf of the paper show that 794 write-offs arrived into the country in June alone.

That represents a whopping 10.7% of all imported vehicles.

The year-on-year comparisons show how badly the situation has gotten: 530 were brought in during June 2015, and 441 in June 2014.

The Irish Independent classifies "write-offs" as:

  • Cars involved in crashes or accidents so serious that they needed major repairs before being officially restored as roadworthy.
  • Cars so severely damaged that they should never have been permitted back on the road under any circumstances whatsoever.

In May, a lack of legislation was blamed on the ongoing problem, as the RTÉ Investigations Unit revealed that Ireland was a prime destination for 'Category B' cars

Chiefly imported from the UK but also the far-flung likes of Australia, it is currently perfectly legal for them to be repaired, registered and driven on Irish roads.

Aside from safety issues, this can have insurance implications; if the car is involved in an accident and the insurer discovers its history, the amount paid out to the driver could plummet.

While car dealers are required to disclose a car's history, some are not informing people purchasing 'Category B' vehicles about its write-off reputation.

Vehicle history website cartell.ie has reported that one in ten cars imported into Ireland over a six-month period last year had been deemed unroadworthy and unfit for repair in the UK.

Including registered but untaxed vehicles, that percentage rose to 12.6%.

The previous Irish government had pledged to introduce legislation making 'Category B' cars illegal on Irish roads, but it was never put in place.

Currently, insurers can voluntarily log details of write-offs with the Department of Transport. The Road Safety Authority has called for this system to be made mandatory.