Some 30 vehicles classed as unroadworthy in the UK are shipped to Ireland each day, according to a report by the Irish Independent and MyWheels.ie.
The figures show that 794 written-off cars made it to Irish shores last month alone and the numbers are increasing. In June 2015, 530 write-offs were imported, while in June 2014 the number was 441.
The newspaper decided to class cars as 'write-offs' if they had been involved in crashes and were in need of repair to be classed as roadworthy. They also included cars that would never be classed as roadworthy, as they were so badly damaged.
Car dealers are, of course, under an obligation to sell cars honestly, but should also take out full motor trade insurance to protect themselves from any unforeseen losses that could occur — particularly when selling second-hand cars to the public.
There are a number of problems with the importation and use of written-off cars in Ireland. These include problems with insurance, where a policyholder could find that their payout falls if their insurer discovers the car in question has been previously written off. There are also concerns about the safety of driving previously written-off cars.
In response to the figures there have been renewed calls for all write-offs to be recorded on the National Vehicle and Driver File, while others are calling for the import of write-offs to stop completely to prevent accidents from occurring as a result of unsafe cars being on the road.
Niall Kavanagh of MyWheels.ie said that customers buying second-hand cars should do all they can to check a vehicle's history before completing a purchase.