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The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation

Government consultation to restart MOT testing of light vehicles: urgent feedback required

Date: Wednesday 24 June 2020

The IAAF is very pleased to report that following a period of intense lobbying, the government has launched a consultation to restart MOT testing of light vehicles as part of the ongoing cross-Government response to COVID-19 and the lifting of the related restrictions.

The government plans to announce this change as soon as possible and intends to draft an amendment to the Motor Vehicles (Tests) (Amendment) (Coronavirus) Regulations 2020. These regulations came into force in March and currently exclude light vehicles from requiring MOT testing. The proposal is to amend the end date of these regulations, with the effect of reintroducing mandatory MOT testing from the amended end date. This is as a result of COVID-19 related restrictions being lifted, the need to keep vehicles in safe working condition, and the need to ensure garages can continue to operate.

The DVSA has sent out a consultation document which includes three options to allow vehicle owners a period of grace during which they can obtain an MOT prior to the cessation of exemptions. This would not affect vehicles already covered by an exemption.

  1. To return to mandatory MOT testing in two to four weeks from date of announcement (i.e. an announcement is made that extensions would not apply to any tests due two to four weeks after when that announcement is made);
  2. To return to mandatory MOT testing in four to six weeks from date of announcement;
  3. To return to mandatory MOT testing in six to eight weeks from date of announcement.

The government acknowledged that many MOT test stations are operating and conducting business as usual, albeit at reduced volumes. The latest figures from DVSA indicate that at the end of May over 65% of normal test volumes were being done, with over 80% of test stations routinely undertaking some testing and road traffic volumes are increasing as restrictions on travel are being lifted; the longer these Regulations are in effect the greater the risks are to road safety.

The intention is to balance returning to mandatory testing with providing sufficient notice to members of the public that these Regulations will be ending and they will require a test and also to ensure that garages are provided enough time to adapt to demands in testing capacity and to have equipment calibrated.

The consultation is also looking for answers to the following questions:

  1. Do you have any views on the proposals to restart testing, positive or negative?
  2. Of the three periods mentioned above, which would be your preferred time for restart?
  3. Do you have any suggested amendments to the proposals?
  4. Do you have any concerns which you think have not been addressed?
  5. Do you have any other general comments?

If any member would like to forward any comments, can they please send them to anns@iaaf.co.uk for collation no later than 5.00 p.m. on Thursday 25th June.