Interesting facts you (probably) didn’t know about the scrap and car salvage industry

Let’s be honest – if you’re reading this, you’re probably aware of what car scrapping is, but your knowledge is probably fairly limited. If that’s the case then fear not, because in this article we’ll be looking at some fascinating facts related to the sector that will likely not only have passed you by but could well be new information to even those within the industry!

1. Every year in the UK a staggering 1.7 million vehicles are scrapped

Given that only around 50 million people in the UK are eligible to drive, this statistic means that every year, around one person in 25 will go through the process of getting their vehicle scrapped. This is, of course, fantastic news with regard to the UK hitting its recycling targets.

2. Around 95% of the scrap taken from a processed car will be recycled

In recent years the car scrapping sector has been leading the way when it comes to reducing the amount of material that is sent to landfill. Only around 20 years ago car scrappers were sending vast quantities of material to be buried – even materials that were valuable – simply because it was cost-effective. However, with the recycling industry now much more advanced, it is far easier to recycle all types of material – from metals to glass, rubber to leather – so that they can be used again either in the creation of new cars or for an array of other purposes.

3. The scrap will more than likely end up going abroad

Estimates suggest that only around a quarter (25%) of all steel that is recycled in the UK ends up staying here. The vast majority ends up being shipped abroad, with a huge bulk of it ending up in Turkey, which is the world’s biggest importer of steel that has been recycled in the UK.

4. The largest car ‘shredder’ in the entire world is located in the UK

You probably have a pretty good idea of what a car shredder looks like just from that brief description and, let me tell you, what you’re thinking of is spot on. The machine, which cost a mere £10 million when it was built, was shipped to these shores around 15 years ago and has been crushing cars ever since. Located in Wales, the shredder is so powerful that it can devour as many as 450 vehicles in a solitary hour and makes use of so much energy that is directly linked to the national grid to ensure that it can keep operating at all times.


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