Thursday, 18 June 2015

The answer to car accident cold callers is in the air tonight

IT MIGHT be the middle of summer but it’s a frosty January night that’s haunting me at the moment.

Regular readers might remember that about 18 months ago, my misfortunate Mondeo got pranged up the backside by a BMW that failed to stop in time. The crumpled repmobile was a write-off, but I was unharmed and got a cheque in the post for the damage. To be honest, I’d totally forgotten about it. Unfortunately, as it turns out, the world of telemarketing hasn’t.

It used to be occasional but now different call centres are calling – sometimes as often as four times as day – demanding to know why I haven’t taken out the compensation I’m owed for something that happened 18 months ago. They’re not interested when I politely explain I wasn’t injured. Nope, my neck doesn’t creak in pain when I get up in the morning, and I definitely don’t want to make my insurance – and yours, for that matter – even more expensive for claiming compo for an injury I clearly don’t have.

Not good enough, they reckon. So they ring back, over and over again, hoping I’ll change my mind. It is infuriating, particularly when their numbers – which usually purport to be from call centres in Manchester and Liverpool – don’t accept calls coming back the other way.

Seeing as I’ve asked them to remove my number from their database – which they’ve point blank refused – I’ve got creative instead. Sometimes I’ll read them extracts of poetry or road tests from Auto Express. Sometimes I’ll slip into my schoolboy French and test my ability at ordering baguettes from the nearest boulingerie. My latest wheeze is to regale them with my cover versions of Phil Collins’ greatest hits. In The Air Tonight is particularly good at getting personal injury compensation firms to hang up!

In all seriousness though, I know I’m not the only one being harassed and hounded by these companies – a quick straw poll of my fellow Facebookers the other day revealed a litany of fellow motorists whose lives are being made a misery by cold callers who’ve been given access to your insurance details.

They are rude, won’t take no for an answer and insist on going over what can be very unpleasant motoring memories, over and over again. Their nasty brand of pressuring people over the phone is also part of the reason so many spurious whiplash claims are being chased – something even the Transport Committee down at Westminster reckons is a big problem.

The best advice I can offer to anyone in the same boat is get your number registered with the Telephone Preference Service.That or brush up on your karaoke skills for when the call inevitably comes. I think next week my friends at the call centre will be treated to The Human League’s back catalogue!


  1. Hi David, what you need to do is to log the duration of every call and say that you will then invoice them monthly for the cost of your time at £100 per hour. If they fail to pay you will take them to the small claims court. This has worked for others. Hope this helps. from your local garage.

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