The Trading Standards service for Lancashire County Council issued the warning after yet another local resident was found to have been victimised by Aston Midshires Insurance, a Leicestershire-based insurer currently under investigation by the watchdog group.
The motorist, who had chosen Aston Midshires because it was purportedly offering discount car insurance for young drivers, was pulled over by police when records indicated he was not in possession of valid insurance. Both the police and the Financial Services Authority are also investigating the firm, with the FSA listing the insurer on it website as an overseas firm operating without authorisation to do so in the UK.
Road policing PC, Mark Howson, said that police were alerted to the issue when they stopped a driver in Knott End for not having valid insurance. The driver in question had believed he was insured after purchasing a policy through Aston Midshires, which could have been disastrous if he had been involved in a road traffic accident, PC Howson added, as this would have left the driver responsible for the sometimes massive financial costs of a traffic collision.
Lancashire County Council deputy leader, Albert Atkinson, also commented on the incident by stating that the council urges any motorists who have been driving about after purchasing insurance from this firm to cease doing so until finding an authorised insurer. Cllr Atkinson added that even though people purchased cover from Aston Midshires in good faith, they would still face paying significant financial costs in the event of their involvement in a collision.