Were cops Q right to stop my mate?
The police pulled a friend over at the side of the road and said their system showed that the vehicle was not insured. He assured them it was and showed them a scanned copy of his current insurance certificate on his phone. But the officers weren’t interested in the certificate and repeated that their records show the vehicle as uninsured. In the end, it turned out to be a mistake by the insurer. They had failed to arrange cover even though they had taken payment. Back to the police, can they stop you at the roadside for reasons you know to be false? I thought you had seven days to produce documentation. Andrew Blee, email As you point out, the vehicle was not in fact on cover because of a mistake by the insurer, so the police were correct – although this was clearly not your friend’s fault.
The police can stop a vehicle for any reason. If they ask you to stop, you should always pull over when it is safe to do so. You are breaking the law if you don’t. If you’re stopped, the police can ask to see your driving licence, insurance certificate and MOT certificate.
If you don’t have these documents with you, you have seven days to take them to a police station. Take more than seven days and you are breaking the law. The police can also give you an on-the-spot fixed penalty notice for many minor offences and make you take a breath test in certain circumstances. You can also have your vehicle seized if you are stopped on suspicion of driving without insurance and for some other offences.
‘The police can stop a vehicle for any reason. You must pull over’