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A move to allow private HGV-MOT Testers could only be a step in the right direction. Following David Cameron’s recent Cabinet reshuffle, the NFDA has written to new appointee, the Rt Hon. Andrew Jones MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Department for Transport (DfT) to discuss the pressing need to allow private testers to carry out MOTs on HGVs.
This would not only bring the HGV-MOT service in line with the current system for car and van MOTs, but create greater flexibility for business.
Whilst the introduction of new private Authorised Testing Facilities throughout the country has enabled vehicles to be both prepared and checked at the same time, ministry testers are still restricted to their standard working hours. Businesses are also hindered by the travel time it takes to reach testing stations, which unnecessarily increases the time a vehicle is out of action and reduces a business’s operational abilities. The government is also losing money paying for travel costs.
New private testers would allow businesses to operate 24 hours per day, throughout the year, whilst maintaining a high level of safety standards on UK roads. Although some have claimed private testers are less likely to fail vehicles, this is not reflected by Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) figures. In 2013/14, 40% of all cars, vans and passenger vehicles were failed; the number rose to 50% for Class 7 Goods Vehicles. These tests are done by private authorised garages. I see no reason why this cannot be applied to HGVs.