ROAD tax dodgers in Huddersfield have been rumbled after a major crackdown by police and Government officials.
Eleven Huddersfield motorists have been caught without road tax since the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency launched a campaign to enforce new rules on Monday.
And yesterday drivers faced other checks in a roadside operation at Milnsbridge.
Patrols by police and DVLA wheel clamping units have been stepped up - despite the DVLA having a new database which claims to automatically detect drivers whose road tax is unpaid.
It issues fines of £80 to tax dodgers, or people who fail to report their car as sold, scrapped or taken off the road.
Yesterday, traffic officers from Holmfirth police station set up their fourth patrol of week, at a lay-by on Manchester Road.
No tax dodgers were spotted, but several motorists stopped were found to have faulty vehicles.
Pc Peter Doyle said this was why patrols were still important, despite the new database.
He said: "If a car has no road tax, there is a possibility that it has no MOT or insurance. These are things you can't pick up from the database."
During tax patrols in Huddersfield this week one man was arrested for drink-driving, driving while banned and having a fake tax disc.
Another man was caught driving without a licence, insurance or MOT. He also had a tax disc from another car in his windscreen.
The faulty vehicles spotted yesterday had been examined by officers from the Vehicle Inspectorate, who regularly join police patrols.
The unsafe vehicles were given prohibition notices and either recovered by the owners or left in the lay-by for police to recover later.
Customs and Excise officers were also at yesterday's patrol checking vehicles' fuel.
They were looking for vehicles using illegal red diesel - which is used by many drivers because it costs about £2 less a gallon than legal white diesel.
Since no tax dodgers were caught, DVLA wheel clampers - who had attended specially - were the only people with little to do.
They had planned to target vehicles with tax more than a month overdue.
The clampers were part of a mobile unit which clamps cars while the driver is there.
The idea is to instantly find out if the release fee will be paid - rather than waiting 24 hours, as they would if the car was unoccupied when clamps were put on.
If the £200 release fee is paid within an hour, the owner gets £120 back.
But if the car is left for 24 hours, it is towed away and the fee rises to £280.
Each day, £15 is added for storage, until 14 days have passed, when unclaimed vehicles are crushed.
Pc Doyle said there would be more patrols next week.
He also urged people to call the DVLA's new hotline to report road tax cheats.
The number is 08000 325202.
Pc Doyle added: "Paying your road tax is important, because if people don't pay, the next year it goes up for all the people who do."