Motorists warned over new road accident scam

Published: 29/08/2013

Police are warning drivers of a new scam hitting UK roads which sees motorists flash their lights at a fellow driver to seemingly allow them out of a junction before deliberately crashing into them.

Called ‘flash for cash’, this is the latest development in the established road accident scam – ‘crash for cash’ – where the culprit would suddenly brake for no reason causing the vehicle behind to drive into the back of them.

Unlike its predecessor, victims of the ‘flash for cash’ scheme could find it more difficult to prove their innocence in court as it is a case of their word against the culprit. Scammers are also thought to be deliberately targeting more vulnerable road users including older and female drivers who they perceive less likely to ‘put up a fight’.

While this ‘friendly’ gesture is commonly used on the roads, the Highway Code clearly states that drivers should ‘never assume that flashing headlights is a signal inviting you to proceed’. This could therefore be of detriment of the victim.

However police are hoping raising awareness will help reduce the risk of road traffic accidents. Detective Inspector Dave Hindmarsh is from the Metropolitan Police:

“The problem is a growing problem. Financial it costs insurers £392million a year – that impacts on motorists as it’s an extra £50 to £100 on every person’s premium so that’s a financial cost.

“[There are] emotional costs [as] if you’re involved in a crash you could well lose your confidence, and if your passengers are children they may well become wary of being passengers in cars, and of course you may get injured or killed.”

Content correct at time of publication

Show All Articles