Biennual MOT testing proposed for Northern Ireland

Consultation calls for feedback on proposals to hold MOT tests every other year

Biennual MOT testing proposed for Northern Ireland

Proposals to carry out MOT tests every two years in Northern Ireland have today (25 August) been put forward in a consultation by the Department for Infrastructure.

The Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) claims that the UK government’s recent announcement of a ban on the sale of new diesel and petrol vehicles by 2030 combined with biennial testing, if introduced, would help to address future testing capacity issues.

The change would remove approximately 240,000 (24 per cent) of cars and light goods vehicles from the vehicle testing regime in Northern Ireland each year, out of a current annual total of around 1,000,000.

The move could also see an estimated 10,500 fewer motorcycle MOT tests each year.

Related: Northern Ireland’s MOT lift failures cost £4M in cancelled tests, report finds

Infrastructure Minister, Nichola Mallon has suggested that “now is the right time to ask the public and those with a direct interest in MOT testing, road safety and environmental protection and others for their views”.

She added: “I realise there will be those who favour a change in the frequency of MOT testing and others opposed to any change to the current process.

“Therefore, I would encourage everyone with an interest to respond to this call and clearly put forward their views with supporting evidence where possible.”

Related: IGA calls on government to provide ongoing financial support for independent garages

Tests are currently required for cars and motorcycles on an annual basis once they reach four-years-old in Northern Ireland.

Light goods vehicles that weigh under 3,500kg are first tested from three years old.

Responding to the consultation announcement, Mark Field chief executive of the Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation (IAAF) said: “It is more important than ever, following the reduction in Northern Ireland testing due to defective lifts in early 2020 and then the impact from the coronavirus pandemic, that the current testing frequency be upheld if not strengthened.

“To ensure as safe and cost-effective motoring as possible, motorists are responsible to have their vehicle inspected and serviced regularly.

Related: DVSA plans to increase MOT slot fee

“Given the substantial backlog of tests in Northern Ireland, which are only coming back to pre-pandemic levels in September, there are more unsafe vehicles on NI roads than ever before.

“Test Centres are currently experiencing an increase in failed items as a direct result of the granted extensions.

“It is vital that the Northern Ireland executive understands the impact that a change in MOT frequency would have on the number of unsafe vehicles on NI roads.”

The consultation will remain open until 19 October.

Share your comments below.

Home Page Forums Breaking: Biennual MOT testing proposed for Northern Ireland

Viewing 7 posts - 1 through 7 (of 7 total)
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  • #216229 Reply

    Proposals to carry out MOT tests every two years in Northern Ireland have been put forward in a consultation by the Department for Infrastructure. Inf
    [See the full post at: Breaking: Biennual MOT testing proposed for Northern Ireland]

    #216253 Reply
    Robert Wright

    I would suggest cars that cover few miles in a year – say 3 to 5 thousand should be exempt from annual and go to biennial testing.
    I have a car that I pay “huge” road tax on, yet only drive it occasionally. Possibly only covering 300/500 miles per year.
    My wife too only covers some 3000 on her car annually.
    We have our cars serviced/maintained regularly to increase longevity and maintain safety all round.
    Rob Wright

    #216322 Reply

    I think if everyone could be trusted to service their cars properly, without fail, every year then an official bi-annual test ‘could’ work but I still think its a risk to road safety. As a tester of about 18 years its sometimes shocking to see how a car can pass its mot one year and fail on quite a list the next year.

    #216323 Reply
    Alastair Mayne

    Unfortunately I do not think that this is a sensible suggestion. Although there are some car drivers (as above) who regularly maintain their vehicles despite covering very low annual mileages there is a huge majority of irresponsible drivers who are not so careful. It must be remembered that the MOT standard of safety is a bare minimum, and only on the day of the test, without any consideration for what may happen between now and the next test. This is a safety concern, not just for the drivers of these vehicles, but more importantly for the rest of us who are sharing the roads with them.

    #216324 Reply
    michael cleary

    they need to open more test centers and make the test tougher not minimum standards

    #216330 Reply
    Christopher gibbs

    I am an mot tester and some of the cars driving on our roads are shocking, my failure rate this month to date is 67%, at one end of the spectrum it’s just a bulb or split ball joint boot, on the other end of the spectrum it’s tyres down to the ply, or badly worn ball joints that are about to pop out. I had an Alhambra in last week were the presenter must have known there was something wrong as the left back end jumps up and down as it’s running on a tyre with a 2 inch bulge on the tread, and pulling violently to the right because of a missing suspension arm bush. Annual mot a must.

    #216590 Reply
    ian wills

    33% of vehicles fail in the UK each year, 1 Death for mechanical error is to much ! as the busiest Mot Station in the UK i have seen some defects that will end Fatal – road safety needs to be a prioty and bot the saving of 50 pounds

    cars do not visit garages as often now and members of public rely on the mot as guaidence and only get the essential work done where needed

    only a fool would go 4-2-2 and thouse that want to should as if they would like there child in the back of an unknown car thats not need looked at for 2 years

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