Industry continues to welcome looming MOT extension cancellation

Published:  30 June, 2020

Organisations across the sector have continued to welcome the end of the MOT extension return of normal testing from 1 August.

It was announced yesterday (Monday 29 June) that the six-month extension, which was introduced on 30 March, would end on 31 July. The move followed pressure from across the sector as the impact on road safety, and the prospect of a six-month backlog for testing stations became clearer.

Commenting on the development, Andy Hamilton, CEO at LKQ Euro Car Parts, observed: “While we recognised the need for the MOT extension given the lockdown travel restrictions and amount of garage business closures throughout March to May, we welcome the decision to close the extension from the end of July.

“There is now a risk that many motorists may have unsafe vehicles on the road. Recommencing MOT testing is essential in ensuring roadworthiness, and helping keep the UK’s road users safe.

“As an industry, there are steps we will need to take to adapt for the new demand curve that will begin in October and prepare workshops for the high number of tests that will be required throughout the winter months.

“With this in mind, we’re encouraging garages to prepare now. This includes ensuring testers stay on top of their training to make sure they are ready not just to deal with, but to benefit from this increase in demand.”

Andy added: “Investments in increased capacity are likely to pay off, so we also suggest training up new testers, and considering whether there’s scope to add another testing bay in the workshop.”

The move was a positive step for the sector as far as Andy Randall, MD at Halfords Autocentres, was concerned. He said: “Halfords have been engaging with the DfT over recent weeks and welcome this step by government, which is extremely positive for road safety. We firmly believe the MOT test is still the best way to ensure vehicles are safe to drive.

“Our research in recent weeks showed 45% of motorists were concerned about the condition of other vehicles yet only 2% felt there might be an issue with their own, indicating a worrying false sense of security may have been taking hold for many drivers.”

He concluded: “Halfords Autocentres have already seen a rise in MOT bookings over recent weeks, and our technicians are ready to get motorists across Britain back on the road safely.”

Cars, motorcycles and vans due a MOT from 1 August will be required to get a test certificate. However, if the MOT due date is before 1 August, there will still be a six-month exemption from testing. However, people are able to voluntarily get their MOT sooner should they wish, even if they are exempt from the legal requirement.

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