South Carolina Cracks Down on Uninsured Drivers - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

01/05/05

South Carolina Cracks Down on Uninsured Drivers

Even if you don't drive without insurance, you pay the price. Check your insurance bill, and how much they charge to protect you from uninsured motorists.

But now, South Carolina is cracking down on uninsured drivers. If you're caught driving without insurance--one in four South Carolina drivers is--you could lose your license and rack up hundreds of dollars in fees.

First Sgt. Ed Gilman with the Beaufort Police Department sees it routinely as he patrols the streets, and he says in most situations, the uninsured aren't the ones who ultimately pay for breaking the law. "Those penalized are those who have insurance," he said. "The ones who carry insurance legally, those are the ones penalized due to the fact they're paying higher rates."

In fact, most drivers have to pay an extra $20 every year for those uninsured drivers. But now, under the new law, drivers without insurance will not only lose their license plates and registrations as they have in the past, but will also lose their driver's licenses.

It's a law, Gilman hopes will get drivers attention. "If you interfere with someone's ability to drive from point A to point B, you interfere with a lot of things, their personal life and their ability to have a job. So I think with this hanging over their heads, they know if they drive without insurance they know they're going to lose their license and they may think twice before they do it."

And many local drivers are also hoping this new law will take uninsured drivers off the roads. "I think it's good, I think it will help with the rates," said resident Shauw Chin Capps.

"I am happy they're cracking down, because if someone hit me and didn't have insurance, I'm left with footing the bill or going through my insurance and then my insurance goes up," added Gale Gardner Parker.

Reported by: Jaime Dailey, jdailey@wtoc.com

Powered by Frankly