MOT helpline set up amid ongoing Northern Ireland’s test centre issues

Contact number released for motorists affected by MOT backlog

MOT helpline set up amid ongoing Northern Ireland’s test centre issues
Concerning inspection results were revealed in an internal letter from the DVA to its staff and indicated that signs of cracking on lifts were first discovered during an inspection of an MOT centre in November 2019.

The Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) has launched a ‘priority vehicle contact line’ for owners of four-year-old cars that are due their first MOT, taxis and car dealerships – all of whom are unable to obtain a temporary exemption certificate amid the ongoing problem in Northern Ireland’s test centres.

Speaking as the contact line opened earlier this week, DVA chief executive Paul Duffy said: “DVA is continuing to work to contact priority vehicle owners as quickly as possible, however we do not have contact details for all of these customers.

“This line will continue to be open to all relevant customers within the priority groups who need an urgent appointment within two weeks from the time of the call.”

Related: Northern Ireland’s Driver and Vehicle Agency faces heavy criticism for MOT lift failures

The DVA says it continues to do “everything possible to resume normal operations” and two new vehicle lifts are now in operation in Belfast and Newbuildings.

Three existing lifts in Belfast and Lisburn have been independently inspected and are back in operational use.

Two independent reviews announced by the Minister for Infrastructure have also now begun and an initial report in relation to the status of existing vehicle lifts and any repair work necessary is due shortly.

Testing for cars and light vehicles at all of Northern Ireland’s 15 publicly-owned MOT centres was suspended with immediate effect on Monday 27 January after “signs of cracking” were found in 48 of its 55 testing station lifts.

MAHA Ireland scissor model DUO+1

MAHA Ireland’s scissor model DUO+1 has been revealed as the affected lift.

In a statement obtained by Garage Wire, the company said: “MAHA Ireland is liaising with relevant stakeholders at present to investigate the condition of all scissor lifts, model DUO+1,  employed at MOT centres.

“The safety of product users is of paramount importance to Maha Ireland and we will continue to make every effort to mitigate potential risks.

“We do not propose to make any further comment pending the outcome of our investigations.”

MOT cancellations 

The DVA has said owners of cars of five years and older whose tests have been cancelled will automatically receive a temporary exemption certificate.

The certificates are also being automatically issued to owners of three year old light goods vehicles.

Testing of heavy goods vehicles, buses, motorcycles and re-tests remains unaffected by the current disruption.

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