The traffic police practice of confiscating vehicles for certain reasons creates a storage problem. To solve the problem, the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes has begun donating the junk vehicles to charities, which then receive cash for the metal.
Last week some 2,300 vehicles met this fate. They may not have been junk when police confiscated them, but the donated vehicles all have been in impound lots since at least 2010.
Drivers never try to reclaim the vehicles for a number of reasons. There may be a stack of traffic violations and fines that the owner cannot pay. Or there may be irregularities in the title that cannot be solved.
For whatever reason, the owners have walked away. The ministry workers then have the job of clearing the titles so the vehicles can be junked. The ministry maintains impound lots all over the country.
The donations were to the Asociación Divino Niño Alajuelense con Esperanza y Superación Social, the Fundación Ministerio de Fuerzas Especiales in San Sebastián, Asociación Casa Diurna del Adulto Mayor Esperanza in Zurquí, San Miguel and Santo Domingo de Heredia and the Fundación Hospicio de Huérfanos de San José.