MOTORIST Lee-Anne Taylor is furious after an insurance blunder meant her car was towed away by police.
The 33-year-old is £150 out of pocket after officers wrongly suspected her of driving without insurance.
It later emerged she was fully covered by a policy she had bought the day before – but a delay in the database meant her details had not shown up.
By the time she proved her innocence, the car had been impounded and she had to pay £150 to have it released.
‘I’m just so angry about it and I want my money back,’ said Miss Taylor, of Jervis Drive, Gosport.
‘Within 20 minutes I was down the station with documents to prove I had insurance.
‘They said nothing was showing up, apparently because my insurance was valid from the day before.
‘I don’t care whose fault it is, I just want someone to pay the £150.
‘It’s just after Christmas, I’m a single mum and luckily I had the money spare because it’s my sons’ birthdays.
‘They always advise you not to keep documents in your car in case they are stolen but I would advise other drivers to take a copy to keep with them in case this happens.’
Hampshire Constabulary said Miss Taylor was stopped on January 13 because their police computer flagged her car as having no insurance.
Officers then checked with the Motor Insurers’ Bureau (MIB) but their database also had no results.
The 33-year-old could not show officers a print-out of her policy because it was at her parents’ house.
They offered to wait until the recovery truck turned up for her mother to arrive but she could not make it in time.
Miss Taylor’s insurance company, Asda, confirmed they sent her details to the MIB but said the database is not a real-time tool and is not 100 per cent accurate at any given time.
The MIB said her details went on the system at 6pm – six hours after the 33-year-old was stopped by police.
Hampshire Constabulary is refusing to refund the £150 as the car seizure was legitimate given the information available to officers at the time.
Spokeswoman Sally Adams said: ‘Even allowing for the delay in the insurance policy details to be transferred across to MIB, Ms Taylor was given the opportunity to show documents or provide further evidence of her insurance to the officers but failed to do so.
‘Officers made two database checks to verify Ms Taylor’s policy and in neither instance did the policy show up.
‘They then gave Ms Taylor the opportunity to show them her documents or at least give further details they could verify but she failed to do so.
‘On these grounds they were perfectly entitled to seize her car. We would suggest this is a matter for Ms Taylor and her insurers.
‘It would seem sensible to keep insurance documents or at least your reference number with you when driving.’
Asda spokeswoman Jo Newbould said: ‘In this instance it would appear the customer was covered but the police may have had reasonable belief the vehicle was not insured.
‘As it was later proven the vehicle was in fact covered we’d suggest the customer looks to the police to refund the costs associated with the vehicle’s seizure.’