MOT tester Annual Training & Annual Assessment: The next 12 months

Ian Gillgrass examines what you can expect to be facing over the next 12 months when it comes to MOT Annual Training and Annual Assessment

Published:  11 June, 2019

In my last editorial in the March issue of Aftermarket, I discussed that the time was running out for MOT testers to complete their Annual Training and Annual Assessment. This needed to be completed by the deadline of 31 March this year (2019).
The deadline has now passed and hopefully all MOT testers completed the training and Annual Assessment on time and are now ready for some down time to digest the topics that the DVSA have advised for the next 12 months.
Many MOT testers left last year’s Annual Training and Annual Assessment until the last few weeks of March, or even the last few hours before the deadline. Those who didn’t complete will need to contact the DVSA, complete the Annual Assessment and also facing the DVSA Vehicle Inspector ‘observation test’ all of which could take considerable time away from MOT testing with the result being a reduced income.
If it is necessary to request a demonstration MOT test,  call the DVSA on 0300 123 9000.

This year (1 April 2019 to 31 March 2020), why not complete the Annual Training and Assessment early, even though you might have just completed the previous year’s requirement. It could all been done by Christmas – yes will we be fast approaching that time of year soon – reducing the stress of the ordeal.
An MOT tester is required to complete a minimum of 16 hours training in a five year period. Each year an MOT tester must complete at least three hours of training associated with the DVSA prescribed syllabus as indicated below.
The DVSA MOT tester Annual Training can be delivered in various forms. These include, but are not limited to, in-house, book form, electronic (e-learning) or face-to-face. There are a number of training providers in the industry that provide such services. MOT tester Annual Training must be recorded as follows:

  •  The MOT annual training year (for example April 2018 to March 2019)
  •  The date of the training
  •  How long the training session lasted
  •  What topics you covered during the session
  •  Notes on what you did, how you did it and what you learned
  •  What vehicle groups your training covered
  •  MOT tester name and MOT Testing Service user ID

The MOT tester training records will be asked for by the DVSA representative during a Vehicle Testing Station site review.

  •     The subjects in this year’s (2019/2020) MOT tester Group B (Vehicle Classes 4 & 7) Annual Training syllabus are:
  •  Updates to testing standards since 20 May 2018
  •   Using the MOT testing service to check you’re carrying out tests correctly
  •   Updating your user profile details on the MOT testing service
  •   Vehicle identification
  •   Tyres, lighting, brakes and suspension
  •   The driver’s view of the road
  •   The introduction section of the MOT inspection manual for group B vehicles

The MOT Annual Assessment pass mark remains at 70% this year and will include questions on the syllabus as detailed before, but will also include some elements of the Annual Training taken from previous years, namely those questions that MOT testers frequently got wrong, and some of the MOT General Standards/Procedures.
It is a good idea to consult with professional training organisations who can provide in-depth information to help meet the training criteria as set by DVSA.
All MOT testers have been using the vehicle inspection criteria since its implementation in May 2018. Some items in the MOT Inspection Manual have changed and will continually go through revision
For those that can remember, the changes to the MOT Inspection Manual prior to May 2018 used to be shown by a vertical line opposite the changes. Now all the changes in the MOT Inspection Manual are detailed at the bottom section of the MOT Inspection Manual index. The MOT tester will need to click on ‘show all updates’ to allow the updates to be shown
(see fig 1).
The MOT tester can use this information to see how the MOT Inspection Manual has changed over a period of time. The first revisions were made in September 2018 with the next revisions due soon (see fig 2).
The MOT tester will need to click on the “hide all updates” to return to view the MOT Inspection Manual index page on a single webpage.

Red, Amber, Green
In the previous year’s Annual Training there was limited information on the MOT tester data and its usage. With the introduction of the MOT tester risk rating, each MOT tester will now be rated either Red, Amber or Green. This risk rating is calculated by comparing the MOT testers individual test information against the national averages along with additional information such as that contained within the MOT tester ‘event history’. Again the MOT testers ‘event history’ can be seen by clicking on the link within the MOT testers profile.
A high risk rating (red) does not necessarily mean that the MOT tester is doing something wrong. However, the MOT tester will need to look at the ‘test quality information’ to try to find out the reasons why the risk rating is higher than normal.
The MOT tester can review their own ‘Test Quality Information’ (TQI) data and compare this with MOT testers within the same MOT test station and also the national average just by viewing the data while in their profile. Many training organisations can provide guidance on what to look for within the TQI data that could cause a high risk rating.
DVSA constantly review information both from the MOT Testing Service (MTS) and also feedback from the Vehicle Testing Stations to try and find out the areas that need to be improved to enable MOT testers to carry out MOT tests to the desired standard. The ‘top 5 areas’ that are typically missed or not inspected to the correct standards have been identified as:

  •  Headlamps and alignment
  •  Driver View of the Road
  •  Tyres
  •  Anti-roll bar
  •  Coil springs

Some of the areas listed above have been in the syllabus for training in previous years, so expect these to reappear in the Annual Test.

Another area of concern is the simple mistake of registration of a vehicle, which on the surface seems such a simple formality. The vehicle details are sometimes incorrectly input when they are simply taken off a hand-written record such as a ‘job card’ rather than taking the details directly off the vehicle. The consequence of this can result in the wrong vehicle being issued with an MOT certificate.  This is treated as a serious offence, considering it might seem like such a simple mistake.
Each MOT tester will need to complete their Annual Training and Annual Assessment before the deadline of March 2020. It may seem a long time away at present, but why not get it completed sooner rather than leave it close to the deadline in March 2020. You won’t be alone in not completing your training yet but why not get it out of the way.
Remember to log any training that you do, in which ever format that you choose, with the correct information alongside as indicated in this very article.

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