The DVSA has announced that it is working on a number of changes and ‘temporary workarounds’ for its new MOT testing service which is currently being used by more than 16,000 garages across the country.
Last week’s MOT ‘Comp 2’ chaos sparked outrage among testing stations with many describing it as ‘unfit-for-purpose’ as they struggled to contact the DVSA, despite official advice.
Director of the Independent Garage Association, Stuart James said: “We do not think that the DVSA has communicated very well to the trade during this difficult time and their slow updates on websites, social media and poor telephone response via their helpline has been a case in point.
“Once the dust has settled, there will be a number of questions to be answered but in the meantime, we will continue to work with them to ensure that the trade can continue to carry out MOT testing for the public.”
Apologising for any inconvenience, the agency has said it will be making the public aware of the changes it has been making to the system and maintain that the known issues are temporary.
Until August 31, 2015, garages will now be emailed contingency codes every day for use in the event of further system outage.
Known issues with the MOT testing service
|DVSA known issues||DVSA workarounds|
|You can’t print a duplicate MOT certificate.||Refer customers to a garage still using the old MOT Comp system or contact the DVSA on 0300 123 9000 – they can issue duplicates for a £10 fee.|
|You can’t carry out a restest.||If the problem is within the first 10 working days of using the new service you should carry out the retest as normal and record it as a full test as a temporary measure. After this 10 working day window, can carry out retests as normal within the new MOT testing service and record them as retests.|
|Non-component advisories are missing from the service.||Enter a manual advisory until the issue is fixed.|
|Historic odometer readings are missing from the service.||The issue is being fixed, but there’s no workaround.|
|Contingency tests are recorded in the service as having been carried out at 1am on the day of the test.||The issue is being fixed, but there’s no workaround.|
|Small text font.||Check your printer settings. These should be set for A4 paper, in black and white. Contact your IT supplier if you have any further problems.|
RAC spokesman Rod Dennis said: “The problems are causing staff at some garages a real headache, with motorists having to make do with hand-written MOT certificates until the problem has been solved.
“Our advice to motorists is to check the date of their next MOT – and not leave getting their car to the garage until the very last minute.”
Many motorists were last week left unable to drive their cars while the new MOT system remain non-operational.
‘Ten years of contingency numbers’
Richard West, owner of Apolo Motor Services in Fareham, Hampshire, told GW: “The first day we had it was a nightmare, they told us to phone them to get a contingency number in the event of the system going down but they wouldn’t answer the phone.
“Eventually after three hours, I got through to someone who told me they’ve got ten years of contingency numbers on a sheet.
“The DVSA told me the system is nothing to do with them, they employ an IT firm to look after it.
“It was a complete and utter joke, it could have been planned so much better.
“The absolute worst thing about it all was that they told me the system never worked in trial.”
Lack of confidence in the system
David Reynolds, owner of D F Reynolds told GW that he watched the new system get progressively worse as more garages made the switch.
He said: “I could see what was going to be. It’s been a real inconvenience, it’s been disappointing too.
“It seems like they’ve been working to a time and would have made the system live, whether they were ready or not.
“I’ll be a bit happier if we can get to Friday without any problems, I just haven’t got any confidence in it yet.”
Mr West added that he’s in no doubt that the problematic switch over has lost his business money.
He said: “My phone bill is going to be astronomical, we’ve had to cancel MOT tests because we couldn’t carry them out and the DVSA wouldn’t answer the phone.
“Our MOT customers have ended up going somewhere else, somewhere still on the old system.
“It was an absolute nightmare.”
Are you still experiencing problems with the new MOT testing service? Leave your comments, share your concerns and let us know how the switch over ‘glitches’ have affected your business.