The government is consulting on plans to end the six-month MOT extension earlier than planned in line with easing lockdown restrictions.
According to the IAAF, the Government intends to amend the Motor Vehicles (Tests) (Amendment) (Coronavirus) Regulations 2020, which were brought in when lockdown began in late March, and exclude light vehicles from mandatory MOT testing.
An amendment would see change the end date of the MOT extension, which is currently set to expire on 29 March 2021. Drivers are given a six-month extension from the date their test was originally due.
An announcement will be made “as soon as possible”, said the trade body.
The DVSA’s consultation document outlines three options for ending the extension while allowing vehicle owners a grace period to obtain a valid test certificate:
- 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);
- To return to mandatory MOT testing in four to six weeks from date of announcement;
- To return to mandatory MOT testing in six to eight weeks from date of announcement.
The IAAF quotes DVSA figures showing that, despite the extension, current test volumes are at more than 65% of normal levels, and more than 80% of test centres are “routinely undertaking some testing”.
The body adds that traffic levels are returning to normal, so “the longer these Regulations are in effect the greater the risks are to road safety”.
As of 15 June, retail outlets have been allowed to reopen with social distancing measures in place, and the hospitality sector is set to gradually begin operating again from 4 July. While garages have been allowed to operate throughout lockdown, the MOT extension was devised as a means of reducing unnecessary social contact, and to discourage people from leaving their homes.
IAAF members are encouraged to submit their views on the consultation with answers to the following questions:
- Do you have any views on the proposals to restart testing, positive or negative?
- Of the three periods mentioned above, which would be your preferred time for restart?
- Do you have any suggested amendments to the proposals?
- Do you have any concerns which you think have not been addressed?
- Do you have any other general comments?
Answers should be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org by 5pm today (25 June).