The British sure love their surveillance cameras, don't they? As if living in the police state that is modern Great Britain isn't bad enough for motorists, what with all the speed cameras and the like, there's a new plan afoot: Keep the uninsured from pumping gas.

According to The Mirror, a new government proposal would have surveillance cameras at gas stations determine whether a vehicle carries valid insurance and registration before turning on the pumps. Automatic license plate recognition is already in place at thousands of British fueling stations, acting as a deterrent to driving off without paying. The new measure would be as simple as allowing the systems to cross-reference databases of the national Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, according to the report.

One in 25 drivers in the UK are uninsured, according to The Mirror – some 1.4 million motorists. While the report calls this rate "one of the worst records in western Europe," it's far better than here in the United States.

According to data from 2009, published by USA Today, nearly 14 percent of U.S. drivers, or one in seven, has no insurance. In that report, the south stood atop the list of U.S. states with the highest rates of uninsured drivers, with Mississippi, New Mexico, Tennessee, Florida, Oklahama and Alabama all topping 20 percent.

What do you think about this initiative? Is it it a good idea or a bad one? Would you welcome similar legislation here in the States? Take part in our survey below and feel free to leave your thoughts in Comments.



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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 120 Comments
      Bloomsbury
      • 2 Years Ago
      This makes sense. Why not free up valuable police time by eliminating the problem? I have no sympathy for the people afffected.
      GasMan
      • 2 Years Ago
      These 'solutions' are sold to the public by the benefits they provide and getting uninsured motorists off the road is a good thing. But this is technology people. When is the last time you found it to be flawless? All is well and good until a CCTV with a bug splat won't let you pump gas at midnight when your tank is empty. Is the potential for harming good citizens worth the punishment of bad citizens?
      R3TRO
      • 2 Years Ago
      Sorry, but some things need to be policed. I've been in two accidents my entire 25yrs of driving and BOTH times were caused by un-insured motorists. And who has to absorb these costs, the insurance companies which pass this on to the policy holders with higher rates. Maybe not in the US, but public transportation is much better in the UK and there is no excuse to not use it if you can't afford to drive.
      TangoR34
      • 2 Years Ago
      It works in a limited extent. It will stop fuelling cars without any driver insured. This will not work if the car was 1)insured by someone else but the driver 2)stolen (unless they have that covered by updating the database every min or so) 3)cloned.
      edselfanboy
      • 2 Years Ago
      As an aside, if my rusty math conversion skills are correct, the regular gas is about $5.80 a gallon in US prices. I have seen close to $7.00 per gallon in Italy. We Americans should stop bitching. It's all relative..
        aatbloke1967
        • 2 Years Ago
        @edselfanboy
        £1.40/litre for regular unleaded equates to $2.24/litre US, or $8.48 for a US gallon.
          j0maK
          • 2 Years Ago
          @aatbloke1967
          Regular unleaded Greece is ~1.80€/L, which means around $9 to the gallon. 100 octane fuel costs ~2€/L, which is around 10$ to the gallon. I would bathe myself in gas if I paid the US gas prices.
      Curtis
      • 2 Years Ago
      This sounded like a good idea at first. But then I thought about it. What if someone just needed to fill up a gas can for their mower?
      techfreak
      • 2 Years Ago
      There is going to be an increase of stolen plates in the future.
      alexlivefree
      • 2 Years Ago
      People complain that we are loosing our freedom... yet they vote in favor of this. Pathetic.
        Rob
        • 2 Years Ago
        @alexlivefree
        I say get these damn uninsured drivers off our streets.
          Chris
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Rob
          What are you? John Walsh now? LOL I see this creating more problems than it solves.
          SloopJohnB
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Rob
          Personally, uninsured drivers should have their cars impounded and the driver arrested. No excuse.
      • 2 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        Chris
        • 2 Years Ago
        The man has another 4 years, at best, left in office, so I don't see it working out that way. At some point, the pendulum will swing back the other way. It always does.
      me
      • 2 Years Ago
      Whats baffling is that some people here thinks this a good idea. I thought this was a car enthusiants site
        Rob
        • 2 Years Ago
        @me
        That's right. I like my cars, and I don't want to be hit by some junker with no insurance that has no business being on the road. I have to pay it, everybody needs to.
          me
          • 2 Years Ago
          @Rob
          Well if i get hit by a junker my insurance still covers me. either way i have a deductable and depending on if im at fault or not my premium may or may not rise
      Rob
      • 2 Years Ago
      People who run red lights are also against traffic light cameras. I think there need to be a lot more. Sick of hearing about losers who drive off without paying for their fuel, or somebody being hit by an uninsured driver.
      gefinley
      • 2 Years Ago
      No. The nanny state can get stuffed.
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