Abandoned vehicles are expensive to remove, have a negative impact on the environment, look unsightly and can lower the quality of life in neighbourhoods. This can then result or lead to crime. Abandoned vehicles can quickly become dangerous when vandalised or filled with hazardous waste.
Every year around 2 million vehicles reach the end of their life, either through age or accident.
Under the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005, abandoning a vehicle is a criminal offence, carrying a maximum fine of £2,500 or three month imprisonment or both. An authorised officer may issue a fixed penalty notice of £200 as an alternative to prosecution.
How do you know if a vehicle is abandoned?
The following characteristics are generally common to abandoned vehicles and one, or a combination of the following, can assist in the local authorities’ decision on abandonment.
- Stationary for a significant amount of time (3 months)
- Significantly damaged, run down or unroadworthy
- Burned out
- Lacking number plates
- Containing waste
If you believe the vehicle is dangerous, or is causing an obstruction to your property, please contact the Police on their non-emergency line, 101.
If the vehicle is untaxed or breaking its SORN (Statutory Off Road Notification), and is on the public highway, please report this directly to the DVLA. A link to report these vehicles is listed in the Related Content section.
Please note: this list is not exhaustive, and a vehicle should not be considered abandoned solely on the grounds that a valid tax disc is not displayed.
Please be aware the DVLA have recently made changes to their legislation, from 1 October 2014 the paper tax disc will no longer need to be displayed on a vehicle. Should you wish to check if a vehicle is taxed, a simple check can be done on the DVLA website, which is listed in Related Content section below. You will need the registration number and the make of the vehicle.
If you have an unwanted vehicle
The council itself does not provide a removal service. Any vehicles we remove are handled by an out side contractor.
ARM Recovery Service: 01268 530470
All vehicles handled by them are done so in accordance to the Environmental Agencies - End of Life Vehicles Directive.
Abandoned vehicles often get confused with nuisance vehicles. A nuisance vehicle could be poorly parked, causing an obstruction, involved in residential parking disputes, broken down or untaxed.
There is no automatic right to a space outside your property. If the vehicle is taxed and is not causing an obstruction, it can park there legally.
To report a nuisance vehicle please call the South Essex Parking Partnership on 01245 606710