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Report an abandoned vehicle

​​​​​It's an offence to abandon a vehicle anywhere on the highway (roads and pavements) or public land. There are different ways to make a report.

Who is responsible for removing abandoned vehicles?

Removing an abandoned vehicle is a matter for either the local authority or the police.

Where vehicles are not illegally parked, but otherwise appear to be abandoned, the responsibility for removing and ultimately disposing of them rests in practice with the local authority.

Local authorities have powers to trace the last owner of the vehicle to assign disposal costs. Under the Removal and Disposal of Vehicles Regulation 1986, the police have the power to remove immediately any vehicle which is left in breach of local traffic regulation orders, is causing an obstruction, likely to cause a danger, broken down or abandoned without lawful authority 

Report an abandoned vehicle on the highway 

If you suspect a vehicle has been abandoned on the highway, please report it to the police.

Call the police on 101 to report an abandoned vehicle on the highway

Report an untaxed vehicle on the highway

If you suspect a vehicle has no tax and/or MOT - whether or not it has been abandoned - you can check and report it directly and anonymously if you wish to DVLA:

Report an abandoned vehicle on public land 

If you suspect a vehicle has been abandoned on public land, please report it to us giving as much useful information as possible such as the registration number, make and model of the vehicle, colour of vehicle, location of vehicle and the time it can be seen on the public road.
 

Report an abandoned vehicle (opens in a new window)

What happens next?

Before we can take action, we investigate to work out if the vehicle is in fact abandoned. This is likely if any of the following apply: 

  • It has no keeper on the DVLA’s database​ and is untaxed (we need to check with the DVLA as vehicles no longer have to display a tax disc).
  • It's been stationary for a long time.
  • It's badly damaged, run down or un-roadworthy - for example flat tyres, missing wheels or broken windows.
  • It has number plates missing.

How councils deal with abandoned vehicles​​