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Busted: R1.2m whiplash scam

2013-10-08 09:01

CAUGHT ON CAMERA: A dash cam captured fraudsters in action, colliding with a truck and filing whiplash claims. This might have ended differently had the truck driver not equipped a camera to his vehicle. Image: SMART WITNESS

A dash cam captured the moment an MPV swerved into the path of a truck travelling in the slow lane. Despite not being to blame for the collision, the truck driver was on the receiving end of whiplash claims the equivalent of R1.2-million. Watch the scamsters in action!

LONDON, England - Shocking video footage captured the moment a Ford Galaxy MPV swerved in the path of truck travelling along the M25 in England. Despite not being at fault, four neck-whiplash claims were filed leaving the haulier with a potential claim of as much as R1.2-million.

Video: Whiplash scam busted


The occupants of the Galaxy blamed the truck driver for the crash even though they had crossed three lanes and driven into his path. They had hoped to make a fortune in compensation for their injuries. Fortunately the truck driver had a Smart Witness camera fitted to his dashboard.

Reviewing the footage, it was revealed that the driver of the MPV caused the crash and the dispute was dismissed within days.

In the video released by Smart Witness, the Galaxy can be seen driving past the truck, which was travelling in the slow lane of the motorway at 88.5km/h - well within the 112km/h speed limit. The MPV reacts too slowly to vehicles ahead of it and ultimately collided with the truck. Since the Galaxy had been hit from behind by the truck, the occupants pressed ahead with their whiplash claims.


Smart Witness managing director Simon Marsh said they had seen a surge in demand for its products due to drivers hoping to protect themselves against bogus whiplash claims.

Marsh said: "This is real problem, particularly for hauliers and fleet managers who are running large numbers of vehicles and could be targeted by these fraudsters every week. This new video perfectly illustrates the problems responsible motorists face.

"The truck driver was travelling well within the speed limit when the people carrier swerved directly in front of him to avoid hitting another car in the fast lane. The haulier was very surprised to be on the receiving end of a four whiplash claims for R1.2-million.

"Drivers can often feel like they are on shaky ground when they go into the back of another vehicle, particularly if there are no reliable witness to explain what happened. Blame is nearly always attached to the driver who hits the vehicle from the rear."


Around 550 000 whiplash claims are filed in the UK each year but insurance experts have estimated that perhaps 60% are bogus. It makes the "cash for crash" scam, staging car crashes then filing claims for personal injury and/or damage to their vehicles,  a R16-billion-a-year fraud. The shocking figures were given to MPs by insurers who said the UK had now become the whiplash capital of the world.

According to the AA, since 2006 there has been a 60% rise in the number of personal injury claims while the number of reported accidents on UK roads has fallen by 20% over the same period.

Click here for more information on Smart Witness cameras

Read more on:    england  |  scam  |  crash  |  fraud

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