Copart UK says the stat ‘demonstrates the sheer scale and impact’ of recent flooding

Salvage and online auction organisation Copart UK has revealed that it recovered a staggering 3,000 vehicles in just one day following Storms Ciara and Dennis this month.

On 17 February, Copart UK collected 3,000 vehicles from across the UK – the majority of cars were recovered from the south west and were relocated to the company’s operations centre in Bristol.

Torrential rain in recent weeks has also affected two car dealerships based in Pontypridd, Wales. On 20 February, Copart UK recovered 250 weather-damaged vehicles from the two businesses.

Phillip Briggs, director of operations centres, transport and engineering at Copart, speaking on the 17 February collection operation, said: “That’s the most vehicles we’ve ever had from the insurers we work with on one single day and demonstrates the sheer scale and impact of the latest floods on communities.

“We also had to remove all the stranded vehicles from two roads in the village of Pentre in Wales, to support the emergency services in clearing routes and help local businesses get back to work.

“These floods cause such misery to people – on top of the damage to their homes, they’re often losing their cars.”

According to professional services firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), insurance claims in the wake of storms Ciara and Dennis are expected to reach close to half a billion pounds combined.

Response rate

To tackle flooding, Copart operates a 24/7 surge management team, which deploys recovery teams across the UK. The organisation also has a dedicated flood response unit or a mobile pop-up office – this enables teams to carry out all required tasks at the scene of a flood.

Briggs added: “As [floods] become unfortunately more common, we are investing in our future transporter fleet capability and have really comprehensive response plans in place.

“The quicker a vehicle can be collected and processed, the quicker insurers can process people’s claims and the quicker cars can be restored, maximising value and minimising waste.”

Copart UK handles damaged vehicles for 21 of the UK’s 25 biggest insurers.

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