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Wiltshire Council taking a tough stance against abandoned vehicles

A Calne resident has been issued with a £200 fixed penalty notice for abandoning a vehicle on Harris Road in the town.

Published 30 March 2022
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A Calne resident has been issued with a £200 fixed penalty notice for abandoning a vehicle on Harris Road in the town.

The vehicle was left on public highway in a severely accident damaged state, with no valid tax or registration plates. It was removed without notice by Wiltshire Council after complaints from the public.

Abandoning a vehicle is a criminal offence that can carry a fine up to £2,500 or a term not exceeding three months' imprisonment, or both. The council can also issue fixed penalty notices of £200 as an alternative to prosecution.

In this case, the road where the vehicle was situated has attracted a number of abandoned vehicle reports to the council. The area will now be monitored by Environmental Enforcement Officers and any further vehicles deemed as abandoned will be removed without notice and tougher criminal proceedings will be taken against the owners.

Cllr Dr Mark McClelland, Cabinet Member for Transport and Waste, said: Abandoned vehicles are not only an environmental hazard, they also look unsightly, attract antisocial behaviour, are expensive to remove, and take up valuable parking spaces. That's why we take this issue seriously and we will prosecute offenders.

If anyone sees a vehicle that they suspect is abandoned, they should let us know using the MyWilts app, and we will investigate and take action where we can.

There is no legal definition of an abandoned vehicle, and so council officers must decide in each case whether a vehicle is abandoned. It could include cars, motor vehicles, trailers or caravans.

However, some of the following characteristics are common to abandoned vehicles and one or a combination of these will be taken into account when deciding whether a vehicle is abandoned: untaxed and with no current vehicle keeper on the DVLA record; no valid MOT; stationary for a long time; significantly damaged, run down or un-roadworthy; burnt out; or flat tyres. This is not an exhaustive list, and a vehicle would not have to be displaying all of these traits to be considered abandoned.

To report an abandoned vehicle, people should go to:

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