DI Malcolm Coall, of the West Midlands Police stolen vehicle squad, said 40-50% of stolen vehicles were never recovered. He added West Midlands Police and other forces were involved in talks with the Association of British Insurers and the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency in an effort to tighten up controls governing vehicle write offs and salvage.
'Vehicles written off beyond economical repair should never come back on the road. Vehicle documentation should be completed correctly and vehicle owners should ensure they are dealing with bona-fide salvage dealers,' said Coall, who added: 'Salvage rules are not tight enough. We are seeing hundreds and hundreds of vehicles return to the roads.'