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Keep it safe – get it on the register
The theft of off-road vehicles is big business for criminals, with government figures showing that around £100 million of agricultural and construction vehicles is stolen annually in the UK.* While it’s been difficult to find these stolen vehicles as they couldn’t be registered with the DVLA, the introduction of a new government vehicle registration scheme will help to improve detection rates and stamp out this crime.
Off-road vehicles such as motorcycle, quadricycles, plant and construction machinery can now be registered with the DVLA. The scheme, which is voluntary, will give all off-road vehicles a unique registration number with a prefix of Q or QNI. Having this registration number will make it easier to return the vehicle to its owner if it is recovered after a theft.
It is free to register and, as long as the vehicle is only used for off-road purposes, owners will not need to have a vehicle test certificate or insurance. Once an off-road vehicle is registered, it won’t be necessary to make a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN) every year.
To register, the DVLA requires owners to complete an application for a first tax disc and registration of a used motor vehicle (V55/5), signing the declaration that it won’t be used on the public roads.
The application must be accompanied by documentation showing the Vehicle Identification Number, engine number and proof of ownership as well as a photocopy of the owner’s UK photocard driving licence as proof of name and address. If a photocard driving licence is unavailable, the DVLA will accept photocopies of documents including a passport, birth certificate and a utility bill.
In addition to registering an off-road vehicle with the DVLA, there are other steps that can be taken to reduce the risk of off-road vehicles being stolen. Vehicles should be kept secure wherever possible, using security measures such as security fencing and floodlighting if appropriate.
If it is a construction or agricultural vehicle, registering it with the Construction & Agricultural Equipment Security and Registration Scheme (CESAR) is also recommended. With this, as well as putting it on a central database, it will automatically be included on the DVLA off-road register.
CESAR will also provide support with security marking, including advanced data-dots and a data DNA solution, and plant identification, using embedded chips and tags to enable instant verification of ownership.
This article originally appeared on Allianz.