Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Hi,
Very interesting forum.

I've gone and got myself into a spot of bother.

To cut a long story short, car caught fire and is going to be a total loss.

Car was in very good condition and have various receipts etc to prove that I maintained it.

Somehow I managed to miss that the MOT had expired, 10 weeks ago.
Fully accept it is my own fault.


Am I screwed? Vehicle was definately roadworthy and in good condition but how can I prove it? But I no doubt insurance company will try to wriggle out of it.

Am I going to have to take this on the chin?

Any advice would be good, truly greatful to be alive but depressed at losing my car and being out of pocket by £4-5000.

Thanks,

Mike

Missed MOT expiry car now written off - geoff1248
The onus of proof lays with the insurance company. The fact that it was not MOT'd means that the insurance company has to prove that the fire was caused by something that would have been picked up by an MOT examination. So, what caused the fire and would it have been picked up during an MOT examination?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
The cause of the fire was a plastic petrol can, picked it up from my father in laws barn. I'd picked up some petrol for the motorbike in the morning (the weather was good and I wanted to get out and have some fun). It was a hot day in south devon and I can only assume the petrol can leaked. When I got in the car there was a strong smell of petrol but I opened the windows and aired it a bit, didn't think to much of it as it was a hot day and had a petrol can in the car. Petrol can was in the front of the car as the car is an estate and I have the back seats down for the dogs, so they have plenty of room.

As I drove up the hill from work I put the radio on (not 100% sure this is relevant or not) and suddenly it got very hot, I got out of the car on instinct (was witnessed by a lady but haven't got her details but should be easy enough to track down). Car was gone in a few minutes. Fire brigade came and put it out. So accident had nothing ot do with condition of the car.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - pmh
The MoT certificate was in the glovebox?
--

pmh (was peter)


Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Possibly yes, as I can't find it with the other documents. Why?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Xileno {P}
Because the MOT certificate was in the glovebox, wasn't it? ;-)
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Sorry, I don't follow? The service history etc. was in the glove box, I can't actually find the last MOT at the moment (still going through folders at home) but I rang the garage and they told me it had expired, I also can't find a whole bunch of other things like my passport and driving licence, so I am fairly sure I will find them all together.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Thommo
A copy of the certificate could easily be obtained from the issuing garage but it wasn't MOT'ed was it.

Think the lack of MOT is the least of your worries.

Petrol not in authorised container, culpable negligence.

In authorised container that leaked, not fit for purpose, culpable negligence.

Consult a lawyer now but think you just lost £5K.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Armitage Shanks {p}
Are plastic cans not 'authorised'? Every garage seems to sell them.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Peter S
I thought they were OK for up to 5 litres?

Peter
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Thommo
They are a certain design to be authorised and yes they are plastic. He doesn't say it was an authorised design. Even so it leaked, why did it leak?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Xileno {P}
He says the petrol was in a plastic petrol container. There is no indication that it is not authorised.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - pmh
Some insurers will make it a condition that the MoT is valid before paying up on a write off. Others may use the lack of current certificate as grounds for reducing payout. If the car is deemed to be roadworthy (they will presumably inspect the wreck and note the condition of tyres etc) and the small print does not require a MoT certificate I think you stand a reasonable of being paid.

If you provide garage bills etc showing regular maintenance it can only strengthen your case.


--

pmh (was peter)


Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
What was wrong with the container? Also sorry to be thick, what is culpable negligence?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Xileno {P}
The freedictionary.com says

"Noun 1. culpable negligence - (law) recklessly acting without reasonable caution and putting another person at risk of injury or death (or failing to do something with the same consequences)"
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - cheddar
On that basis I think we can say that big_mike was perhaps negligent though not culpably so.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
"culpable negligence - (law) recklessly acting without reasonable caution and putting another person at risk of injury or death (or failing to do something with the same consequences)"

Excuse me????? What did I do that was acting without reasonable caution? I picked up some petrol in a proper can as I have done 100's of times before. You can't be serious can you?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - cheddar
Negligence could simply mean not ensuring that the can was not leaking, to be acused of culpable negligence I tink you would have had to have had 4 gallons in a bucket on the front seat.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - cheddar
negligence I tink you would have had to have had >>


Sometimes you can just tell that my grandmother was from Galway ... to be sure.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - mss1tw
I still can't see how the petrol caused the fire.

Surely you'd have a 'whumph' (!) as it went up.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Armitage Shanks {p}
He put the radio on - tiny spark in a fume filled car? It could be that. Turning a light on, or off, in a gas filled house can make it blow up they had a TV commercial about just that possibility.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - RichardW
Did the fire start in the car or under the bonnet? The conditions of the burnt out car should easily show this (provided the Fire brigade got to it before it was totally gutted). TBH honest I doubt the petrol can had anything to do with it - if you had got enough petrol into the air in the car to reach the lower flammability limit (LFL) it would have just exploded when you turned the key (which almost certainly will cause a spark), also if you had reached LFL I think you would struggle to be in the car, rather than it just smelling a bit. I'd just fill the forms in, and see what happens - I expect there will be a box asking what you were carrying where you should declare the can of petrol, and you might need to include a covering letter explaining the lack of MOT. We can say what we like, but the Insurance Co is holding the cheque book!


--
RichardW

Is it illogical? It must be Citroen....
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Armitage Shanks {p}
1. I guess the can leaked as it and the contents got hot in the parked car and expanded and presumably caused a leak thru the screw on cap.

2. SFAIK Culpable negligence means, literaly, negligence for which some body or bodies can be blamed - from the Latin culpa = blame. Something a bit worse than carelessness but not as bad as intentional and deliberate omission.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Thommo
Sorry BM don't want to be seen as coming down on you but OK so it was a proper authorised can. I assume its melted now but they will check that.

So you opened the car and there was a strong smell of petrol, should you not have enquired where a strong smell of petrol was coming from before starting the engine? Would not the petrol can be the first suspect? Is it reasonable to start a journey with a leaking can of petrol in the car?

Consult a lawyer before you speak to the insurance company.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Thanks for the advice Thommo. TBH the smell was strong but not enough to get me worried, but it was a hot day and I assumed that it was nothing more sinister than the smell of the petrol can. Not sure I am explaining that very well :(

The fire definately started inside the vehicle and yes there was a wumph and intense heat, my over riding memory was of the intense heat and a strong desire to get out. It was only after I had left the car and turned to look at the vehicle that I realised it was on fire, it was like autopilot getting out.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Peter D
Do not mention the lack of MOT and if you are asked suggest you can not find as it was probably in the glove baox with the service records. Your MOT being more that a year ago means that it was not computerised so see if the ask. Regards Peter
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Thanks Peter, they have asked and whilst there is a possibility that it was indeed in the glove box with the service records but I am hopeful it will turn up (as you can probably gather I am not the most organised person in the world, although that may be starting to change now...)Failing that I will get a duplicate from the garage.

I think Thommo has it right, I need to speak to a solicitor and find out how screwed I am. Maybe i've lost £5k but I am still alive, so for the minute I am going to be thankful for small mercies!

Missed MOT expiry car now written off - bell boy
big_mike somebody i knew did this with a can of petrol in the car he worked for a car auction,it was a proper can with a lid on but when he started the car the following morning the fumes had managed to escape and were lit by the ignition switch,he was a mess i can tell you.
So you lived and are safe ...very good.
If you want my opinion i would play the whole situation by ear and work on the proviso that the mot was indeed in the glovebox and let the insurance assesor tell you what HE thinks .
keep quiet and let them do their job ,im sure you will be paid out if you are with a decent insurance company.
Get yourself out for a drink tonight and thank your lucky heather that you and everyone else is ok.
PS never carry petrol in a car please again :)
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
"PS never carry petrol in a car please again :)"

No fear....
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - geoff1248
We all seem to have assumed that the can of petrol was the offending item. Circumstancial. Could it not have been a leak from the fuel line under the bonnet? You will probably never find out but have you told the insurance company about the can of petrol?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Armitage Shanks {p}
I'm not sure that a fuel leak under the bonnet would give you a smell in the passenger compartment and I have the impression that the fire was where Mike was sitting and not in the engine bay. He had to jump for his life which might not have been the case with an engine fire. Perhaps I haven't read all the posts closely enough?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - autumnboy
Big Mike

What most people are saying, Don't mention the fact that the MOT was out of date. If asked for the MOT it was in the glovebox during the fire.

Its the onus of the Insurance company to prove it was not MOT. Not for you to incriminate yourself.

In anycase the radio (if that was the cause) is not an item of the MOT check.

Just act abit dumb, pardon the expression.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - No FM2R
>>Its the onus of the Insurance company to prove it was not MOT

No it is not.

Don't lie, don't mislead, with an insurer its not worth the risk.

However, as has been said, read your Policy Ts&Cs. Does it say the car must be MOT'd or simply that it must be roadworthy ? Could there have been any fault with the car which caused or excacerbated the incident ? etc. etc.

Most likely result is the payout reduced to the value of an un-MOT'd car. However, you might be lucky and avoid even that.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Thanks for the advice guys, have sent off all the documentation I have for the car.

Have checked the terms and conditions and the requirements is for a roadworthy car NOT a current MOT. Although I guess strictly speaking no MOT means it shouldn't be on the road therefore not roadworthy, regardless of condition of the vehicle.

Insurer is Liverpool Victoria anyone had good / bad experiences with them?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - No FM2R
>>Although I guess strictly speaking no MOT means it shouldn't be on the road therefore not roadworthy

Different things -

Something can have an MOT and be unroadworthy
Something can have no MOT and still be roadworthy

Do not confuse roadworthy and road legal. One is a question of safety the other law.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - smokie
Another view is that this could have been an insurance job (petrol igniting in passenger compartment etc).

Whilst I have no doubt that it wasn't, isn't it possible that the police or insurer's may think along those lines?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Just a quick update, Liv & Vic have paid out the full market value. Cheque arrived this morning.

Thanks for all the quality advice whilst I was panicking! I'll start another thread for suggestions for a replacement.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - wemyss
Good result Mike and pleased for you. I suspect your first post had many of us pulling out our documents to check when the MOT was due. Easy thing to forget unless it coincides with road tax demand.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - big_mike
Certainly did at work. Apparently the new MOT certificate has a sticky reminder you can put in your car? Is this the case?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Adam {P}
Yep.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Bill Payer
Coming into this thread late, but it's good to know Liverpool Victoria didn't give you any hassle and paid out quickly - both of my cars are insured with them.

As pointed out earlier, I doubt lack of MOT would be grounds not to pay anyway. MOT people always say it doesn't prove anything, so why should the insurance be able to reverse that and say it's essential.
Friend of mine got paid out on a light aircraft where the air worthyness certificate had expired! (Crash was pilot error).

Thinking about the fire - my guess (if it was petrol can leakage related) is that the fumes gathered behind the dash where they wouldn't have been able to disperse - hence the 'wumph'.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Armitage Shanks {p}
Good Result for you! I had a write-off paid by Liv Vic in what one might call 'iffy' circumstances. Good service and good premium IMHO.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Cliff Pope
So now we all know the name of the insurance company who were told just a little bit less than the full story, let's just hope they never read this thread.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Dalglish
So now we all know the name of the insurance company who were
told just a little bit less than the full story, let's just
hope they never read this thread.

>>

cliff: i have read through all big_mike's posts above, and cannot see anything that justifies your claim/allegation. am i missing something ? otherwise, in my opinion, an apology to him from you may be well deserved.

Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Cliff Pope
Certainly,I do apologise big mike. I was picking up the tone of a number of correspondents, not yours - suggestions about the whereabouts of the MOT certificate, suggestions that you should not have tried to start a car reeking of petrol, etc.
The point I really wanted to make was that these forums may not be private, and others, eg insurance companies, might possibly read them too.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - component part
Do me a lemon-there is nothing incriminating in this thread, no personally identifiable information and no judge would grant 'Liverpool Victoria' access to HonestJohn's site records and then access to the ISP records to get the true name and address of 'Big_mike' and then investigate if he really is a customer etc-get real.

What you are saying may be true, but is unlikely to happen-some people on here just love to tow the miserable line.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Cliff Pope
No, not a serious risk, just something to keep at the back of one's mind.
The point has been mentioned before, I think. I remember the moderators once deleting an insurance company name for just this reason.
The risk, tiny and unlikely though it might be, might come from someone on the forum who happens to work for a particular insurance company. I wasn't seriously suggesting that companies deliberately infiltrated forums in order to pick up information on insurance claims. More like the the cases one reads of of social security staff happening to spot one of their disabled clients paragliding, or being photographed on a luxury cruise when they are meant to be actively seeking work.

Actually if L & V really did want to investigate I don't think it would be very difficult. They'd only have to extract all their "spontaneous non-accident" car fire claims in recent months, and then narrow them down on the basis of the reported facts. Eliminate those with current MOTs, eliminate those that had already been investigated and other causes established, then pursue further enquiries.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - No FM2R
Investigate what ? He told the truth.

A little Big Brother paranoia creeping in ?
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Dalglish
Investigate what ? He told the truth.

>>
agreed, i don't know why cliff want's to continue digging a hole even though he has already apologised.
then pursue further enquiries.

>>
cliff:
if i was an l&v investigator and read this thread
1. i would write to or phone big_mike to congratulate him for his honesty despite what may be seen to be "nudge-nudge-wink-wink" thinly disguised attempts to get him to be "economical with the truth".
2. if i had detected the merest hint of an attempt to mislead or lie, and i would have been inclined to find any reason to bar his claim.

so congratulations to big_mike, honesty does pay.

Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Cliff Pope
I know BigMike told the truth, I have acknowledged that. I realise it was others trying to nudge him in the direction of being a little less than truthful.
All I was saying was, IF someone had revealed on this forum, lets say a bit of uncertainty about whether to reveal something dubious, and there had then followed a discussion about whther to own up or keep quiet, it is conceivably possible that someone in the company could have spotted it.
Emails are not regarded as secure - a forum is in effect a series of open emails.
Missed MOT expiry car now written off - Xileno {P}
Anyway, having got over all that it appears a successful result has occured. Good stuff.
 

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