Car clampings have doubled since paper tax disc was abolished

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The number of cars being clamped because of unpaid road tax has almost doubled since the paper disc was abolished two years ago.

Figures reveal that in the six months leading up to the paper tax discs being scrapped in October 2014, 5,100 motorists were caught each month. That figure has shot up to 9,200 a month over the last six months.

The DVLA says it has increased its enforcement to send a message to drivers that they still need to pay now that the new paperless system is in place.

It uses a private firm called NSL, which has a fleet of 75 clamping vans equipped with number plate recognition cameras. They travel to every postcode in the UK twice a year to find untaxed vehicles.

DVLA chief executive Oliver Morley said: "The law is that you pay your tax. The vast majority pay with no problem at all."

He said that motorists are still sent reminders about renewing their tax, either in the post or via email.

However, Joanne McCusker, a nurse from Salford, had her car clamped for not renewing her tax and had to pay £340 to have it removed.

She had moved house and told the DVLA that she needed to change the address on her driving licence, but wrongly thought that would also change the address her car was registered to.

McCusker told the BBC: "I think it's a bit heavy-handed. There could be another way, I'm sure, rather than have it clamped."