BIRMINGHAM HAS THE HIGHEST CAR INSURANCE PREMIUMS IN UK AFTER BEING NAMED WHIPLASH FRAUD CAPITAL OF THE UK

By Staff Reporter

Birmingham city centre –  Britain’s whiplash fraud capital has the highest car insurance premiums in the whole of the UK, according to new research.

All of the worst 10 postcodes for car insurance in UK are in Birmingham and most of these are within a few miles of the city’s notorious Benefits Street – James Turner Street.

Insurers say Britain’s second city also has the highest number of bogus whiplash claims, which add £90 to every motorist’s bill.

In a survey of all UK cities by SmartWitness Incident Cameras (suppliers of Britain’s most popular vehicle journey recorders)  it was revealed that Birmingham’s motor insurance premiums have shot up and are now seven times higher than Aberdeen, the UK’s cheapest city for car insurance. The price of insuring a BMW 3 Series in Bordesley Green, Birmingham B9 is £1,101.62 per year, compared with Aberdeen city centre which comes in at only £157 for the same car.

All the next nine postcodes are all in Birmingham and most are within just a few miles of James Turner Street which was the subject of the Channel 4 documentary Benefits Street, so-called because most of its inhabitants claim benefits.

The other Birmingham post-codes were 2nd worst B10 Small Heath, 3rd B11 Sparkhill, 4th B66 Smethwick, 5th B8 Washwood Heath, 6th B21 Handsworth, 7th B12 Balsall Heath, 8th B18 Winson Green (exactly where Benefits Street is situated), 9th B19 Lozells, and finally 10th Digbeth B5.

Overall Birmingham has more than a fifth of the worst 100 postcodes for motor insurance premiums in the country – 22 in total.

The second worst city in the UK for car insurance is Liverpool with 17 of the top 100; East London is third on 13, Manchester 4th with 11, 5th is North London with nine; 5th South East London with seven; 6th is Bradford with six postcodes, and seventh worst is Sheffield with three postcodes.

SmartWitness managing director Simon Marsh said: “Part of the reason for the sharp increase for the car insurance premiums is that Birmingham has become the capital of whiplash claims in the UK. The six top areas for Third Party Injury (TPI) claims are all in Birmingham and it’s no great surprise that those neighbourhoods mirror very closely those with the highest premiums in our survey.”

The top five areas with the highest number of third party injury claims are: 1 Washwood Heath, Birmingham B8 (5th highest premiums), 2 Balsall Heath B12 (7th highest premiums), 3 Small Heath B10 (2nd highest premiums), 4 Bordesley Green B9 (1st Highest premiums in UK), and 5 Aston B6 (47th highest).

Mr Marsh added: “Most insurance experts have said that whiplash claims have cost motorists around £90 a year in increased premiums. Over 40% of motor insurance claims are contested but only 2% of SmartWitness claims are, so you can see that having reliable video evidence practically eliminates bogus whiplash claims.”

Other UK cities with high numbers of TPI claims are Bradford with four of the top 20 worst postcodes, Manchester next with three, and Liverpool and London have one each.

The cities with low TPI claims also had the lowest insurance premiums. Several of Scotland’s cities had the lowest premiums in the UK and also the lowest number of TPI claims.

Aberdeen had three postcodes in the top 20 lowest areas for TPI claims – and is the cheapest UK city for car insurance.