Home NEWS Motoring: New law to scrap abandoned “squatter” cars

Motoring: New law to scrap abandoned “squatter” cars


Spain’s General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) has announced a new law that affects thousands of abandoned vehicles across the country

Approximately 50,000 vehicles are abandoned on Spanish roads each year by their owners. Another 20,000 are found in areas such as car parks in shopping centres, hotels, hospitals or airports, residential areas, and private garages or communities of owners, among others, according to data from the General Directorate of Traffic (DGT).

Most of these cars are damaged or just too old to drive and also remain in public car parks, workshops, and warehouses, whose managers cannot bear the cost of service or repair. These are called “squatter” cars.

To put an end to this problem, the organisation led by Pere Navarro (a politician who serves as Director-General for Traffic) has recently presented a mechanism that simplifies the current procedure in which those affected (private citizens, companies, or administrations) had to go to court- as many readers will surely know, this can be an excessively slow process.

Traffico has now published an instruction to manage the destruction and decontamination of the said vehicles. Specifically, article 106 of the Law on Traffic, Circulation of Motor Vehicles and Road Safety has been amended, and now stipulates when a vehicle is considered abandoned.

The new text includes those that are abandoned in private enclosures, places that were not previously contemplated in the regulations, and equates them to cars that are “forgotten” on the streets and highways.

The new instruction allows the competent Administration to order the transfer of the abandoned vehicle to an authorised vehicle treatment center (scrapping) for its subsequent destruction and decontamination. Before issuing the transfer order, the owner of the vehicle will be notified to remove it within a month. If in that period it has not been moved, the vehicle will be transported to the scrapyard.

In addition, the documentation (administrator’s certificate, notarial deed, photographs, etc.) that the applicant must provide, in the case of private premises, will be updated to confirm the abandonment of the vehicle.

Read more about motoring in Spain: DGT launches anti-drink-driving campaign

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