Wealden District Council
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Abandoned Vehicles

What is an abandoned vehicle?

An abandoned vehicle doesn’t usually have an owner and can be:


  • without apparent value
  • over 10 years old
  • significantly damaged, burnt out or un-roadworthy condition
  • stationary for a lengthy amount of time

How to report an abandoned vehicle

You can report an abandoned vehicle online with Sussex Police 

Responsibilities in relation to alleged abandoned vehicles

Police responsibility

The police are responsible for investigating a vehicle if:

  • it’s causing an obstruction or is left in a dangerous position on the highway
  • it’s left in a dangerous position or condition after an accident
  • it’s suspicious and may have been stolen

If the vehicle fits any of the above, report it to Sussex Police by calling 101, emailing 101@sussex.pnn.police.uk or by reporting it to Operation Crackdown

Our responsibility

We have a duty under Section 3 of the Refuse Disposal (Amenity) Act 1978, to investigate and remove abandoned vehicles within the District where appropriate.

We investigate reports of abandoned vehicles on:

  • the highway
  • Lay-byes
  • Council car and coach parks
  • Council Housing Estates and group dwellings

We don’t deal with abandoned vehicles that are:

  • Untaxed vehicles that have an owner – report DVLA Unlicensed vehicles
  • on private land, unless written permission is given by the landowner to deal with the vehicle in question
  • parked outside a property against the wishes of the householder.

What Happens after a report has been made

We work closely with Sussex Police through Operation Crackdown to investigate and remove abandoned vehicles. We will

  • Visit and photograph the vehicle
  • Write to registered keeper to clarify the status of the vehicle
  • If appropriate instruct our contractor to remove and destroy it
  • Take no further action, if an owner comes forward and claims a vehicle

How do I dispose of a vehicle?

If you have a vehicle you wish to dispose of please follow the Government’s guidance – Scrapping your vehicle and insurance write-offs: How to scrap your vehicle – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).