The number of drivers arrested for having no valid insurance has risen by a huge 380% in Scarborough – and children as young as 13 have been stopped at the wheel by police.
The alarming statistics, obtained by The Scarborough News via a Freedom of Information Act request, reveal 60% of those arrested in North Yorkshire for driving without insurance since 2013 are under the age of 30.
Scarborough saw 15 arrests made in 2014, five up from the previous year.
This figure rose again to 18 in 2015 before leaping up to 48 arrests in 2016.
There has already been 28 arrests made in the town up until August 3 this year meaning it is likely the figure will continue to soar.
Scarborough’s rise in arrests is in line with county figures with 114 arrests made in 2013 and that increased to 263 last year - up a whopping 131%.
The Motor Insurers Bureau is at the heart of the fight against uninsured driving, working with the police, insurers and the DVLA to reduce the number of uninsured drivers on the roads.
Neil Drane, head of enforcement services at the Motor Insurers Bureau, said: “In 2016 we worked with the UK police forces to seize 145,000 uninsured vehicles and this is an increase from 2015.
“Our latest figures for seizures of uninsured vehicles in 2017, currently total 83,000.
“Driving and keeping a vehicle without insurance isn’t an option, it is illegal and you will get caught.
“We know that many people have to make some tough choices, but taking to the road without motor insurance shouldn’t be one of them.”
Since 2011 it has been an offence to be the keeper of a vehicle without insurance unless you have notified the DVLA that your vehicle is being kept off the road using a Statutory Off Road Notice.
Almost a quarter of the drivers arrested by North Yorkshire Police were 21 and under with the youngest offenders being as a young as 13.
Mr Drane said: “The number of young people between 17-29 years who are driving without insurance is a key issue for the Motor Insurers Bureau.
“Our awareness messaging aims to reach these people with important information about the consequences of driving without insurance.
“We are not surprised to see that the highest proportion of uninsured drivers are under 30.
“Young people make up a third of uninsured drivers in the UK.”
The Motor Insurers Bureau conducted research as part of our Stay Insured campaign back in 2009 which showed that 1 in 10 young people were not aware that you needed to have insurance to drive on the roads legally in the UK.
Latest research from 2017 also showed that one in four of 18-24 year olds admit that they have considered not taking out car insurance to save money.
At the other end of the scale, the eldest driver to be arrested by county’s police was aged 72 last year.
Scarborough makes up 13% of North Yorkshire’s total number of arrests, 119 of 892, for driving without valid insurance since 2013.
The town’s drivers are the second highest offenders in the county behind York.
The level of uninsured driving in the UK currently stands at one million vehicles.
If you are unlucky enough to be hit by an uninsured driver then you can find out all the information you need about making an claim to the Motor Insurers Bureau on www.mib.org.uk/making-a-claim