Picture Credit: CEN/ Josh Gresswell, CEN/ Polizei NRW, CEN/ Candyshow $ CEN/LewisDeakin
British petrol heads on their way to a rally had cars including a BMW and Mercedes seized by German cops who claimed they were not roadworthy.
The car enthusiasts aged between 20 and 31 were on their way to an annual motoring event in Worthersee in the southern Austrian state of Carinthia when they stopped for a break at a service station in Frechen South along the German A4 motorway, in North Rhine Westphalia, Germany.
Unfortunately for them, they had parked in front of a police station and the cops who checked out the cars seized nine of the ten vehicles claiming they were not roadworthy.
The cars were towed away by a breakdown service and the Brits were eventually allowed to pick up their vehicles, which included numerous Volkswagens, as well as a Honda, a Vauxhall, a BMW and a Mercedes.
However, the British drivers were not allowed to drive their vehicles through Germany as they reportedly had their number plates and documents confiscated and will only be given them back when they return to the UK.
German police claimed the cars had illegal modifications such as being too low and having wheel spacers. The cops also said there were problems with the emissions of some of the vehicles as well as some having very worn tyres.
Volkswagen Scirocco owner Steven, 24, from Norfolk said “this whole debacle cost me 2,000 EUR (1,767 GBP),” when he went to pick up his vehicle.
He added: “I had to pay 800 EUR (796 GBP) to the local authorities. Then I had to fly to England and then travel back with a pickup truck to retrieve the vehicle. Next time I will travel via France to Worthersee.”
One of the group took to social to appeal for help, with a user by the name of ‘candyshowroom’ posting: “Lets see what happens next. 9 cars seized. 22 people stranded, 300 miles from home, 700 miles from Austria. No hotels, no taxis – literally stranded at the side of the motorway. Loads of tears, some laughs, and a load of German feds.
“Combined fines of over 6,000 Euros (tbc). Not the end of Austria yet… if you can help us transport the cars from Cologne to the Belgian border or to Austria…”
Another social media user named ‘lewdeak’ posted: “Update: After conforming with the British Embassy, we’ve been informed our cars will be allowed to be transported out of Germany mid next week. Unsure of what i’ll do after that point, but its some good news. In the meantime, we’re trying to sort hire cars to get ourselves over to Wothersee for now. All isn’t lost just yet, not the way any of us wanted it to go, but thats life. (sic)”
The car owners set up a GoFundMe page which read: “Obviously this page has caused controversy with people thinking that they have gone unprepared which is not the case. They went with extra money knowing there is a risk of having a fine, like everyone else in modified cars going to Worthersee. No one thought they would get their cars seized and themselves left on the side of a road with nothing but luggage.”