Faults found on 48 out of 55 MOT lifts in Northern Ireland

Discovery of scissor lift cracking prompted in-depth inspection of all of Northern Ireland's MOT centres

Faults found on 48 out of 55 MOT lifts in Northern Ireland
A crack in one of the affected lifts in Northern Ireland.

An inspection of all vehicle lifts in Northern Ireland’s MOT centres has detected “signs of cracking” in 48 of the 55 lifts, the BBC has reported.

The inspection results were revealed in an internal letter from the Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) to its staff and indicated that signs of cracking on lifts were first discovered during an inspection of Larne MOT centre in November 2019.

The letter adds the safety of staff and customers “is of the utmost importance” and lift repairs have already begun.

The discovery of cracking on two scissor lifts in Larne late last year led to an in-depth inspection of all of Northern Ireland’s MOT centres.

The inspections were carried out by the company which supplied the lifts, which is also responsible for the maintenance and regular examination of the equipment.

The firm reported the inspection results to the DVA on 15 January, which revealed signs of cracking in 48 vehicle lifts, or 87 per cent of all the lifts in operation.

Remedial repairs

The supplier has designed a “remedial repair” for the affected lifts and this work is already under way.

It added that an insurance inspector will be conducting further checks on the lifts when the repairs have been carried out.

The issue lead to the cancellation of MOTs this week but vehicle owners are being told to attend scheduled tests, unless contacted by the DVA.


However, several motorists who travelled to MOT centres on Thursday, only to be told that their test was cancelled, have questioned why they were not informed in advance.

In a statement on Thursday evening, the Department for Infrastructure said the DVA “is continuing to carry out checks on vehicle lifts in its MOT test centres, following the identification of faults”.

“This is precautionary and to ensure the safety of staff and customers.

“Some checks and repairs have been completed and it is anticipated that remaining inspections will be completed tomorrow [Friday] and any necessary repairs will be carried out as soon as possible.”

Related: Recovery and repair firm fined over death of mechanic

“As and when test centres have been inspected and any necessary repairs completed, they will immediately become operational.

“Boucher Road, Cookstown and Newbuildings test centres are now fully operational and all MOT tests are being carried out.”

The department said a number of test centres will open on Sunday to provide additional tests.

Share your comments below.

Home Page Forums Faults found on 48 out of 55 MOT lifts in Northern Ireland

Viewing 21 posts - 1 through 21 (of 21 total)
  • Author
  • #190574 Reply
    Carl Brighty

    Dear GarageWire,
    As a regular reader and as a responsible supplier of MOT Testing equipment for nearly 40 years, I think the product causing the issue should be named on this Website, along with photographs.
    I am sure UK garages would like to know Make and Model numbers of those vehicle lifts causing issues?
    You can guaranteed that this product is also in UK garages and it would be our duty to inform them if we know of faults and potential dangers involved.
    If these Testing Stations are being closed till the issue is sorted then the matter is of serious potential consequence??
    Comments greatfully received from anyone and everyone who is concerned for their safety.
    Carl Brighty
    Multitune GE Ltd

    #190575 Reply
    Mr Paul Richards

    Carl is correct, more information and pictures of where these cracks are located can help prevent injury or death caused by failure.
    In my experience, all scissor type lifts are prone to excess forces, caused by lifting loads from their resting position. I suggest raising the lift part way before inserting blocks and connecting with the vehicle/load.

    #190576 Reply

    Hi Carl, Thanks for your comment. You’ll be pleased to know that Garage Wire has approached the Department for Infrastructure for details on the affected lifts. We’ll report back on the response as soon as we receive it.

    #190578 Reply

    The lifts are supplied by a German company called MAHA, are maintained by MAHA Ireland

    #190579 Reply
    Carl Brighty

    Hi Gary,
    I appreciate your quick response on this also the fact that you have approached the Department for Infrastructure for details of the lifts concerned.
    May I also ask that you contact the GEA (Garage Equipment Association) in the UK and the EGEA (European Garage Equipment Association) for Europe relating to this.
    I also believe this matter is serious enough that contact be made with the HSE (Health & Safety Executive) without delay so they can release a bulletin.
    Maybe we should go for national coverage through TV News channels as well?
    Please could you keep us all informed of this seriously concerning matter.

    #190587 Reply

    So 2 lifts were found to have this fault and within 2 months the problem was identified in 80% of the others.
    But no faults had been noticed before ? Yet some lifts will have had much more use than others.
    Seems very odd, selective blindness ?

    #190594 Reply
    Carl Brighty

    Hi Dougal,
    What I found odd is the Industry has not been informed?
    A bit like recalls on Cars “SELECTIVE BLINDNESS”

    #190611 Reply

    Don’t forget this is the same organisation that hasn’t been doing diesel smoke tests or cat emission tests this past 12 years. So corner cutting and over ups is now normal practice for the DVA

    #190613 Reply
    Brad Doulton

    I’ve got to ask who was maintaining these lifts? Stevie Wonder?
    There could be no reasonable explanation for all of these lifts failing in the same way and not going noticed, other that negligence.
    As has already been said, some of these lifts will have worked harder than others, which shows a design fault. But surely at least some of these lifts will have been under a routine maintenance program so this fault would have been noticed earlier?
    I find it strange that all the lifts have suddenly developed the same fault at the same time.

    #190738 Reply

    Mot stations in Northern Ireland carry out 200 tests in a week a lot more than one mot garage in England each lift could be up and down a hundred times in one day

    #190739 Reply
    Carl Brighty

    Good point John,
    We have many stations fitted in the Uk doing similar quantities of MOTs per week.
    However my point has always been that the safety of the guys underneath these lifts is paramount. The information coming out is really sketchy????
    We need more information more photos and some sort of safety bulletin from the manufacturer so at least we can warn garage owners and MOT testers of the danger they could be in if they carry on using the equipment.
    Thanks for your input.

    #190764 Reply
    mick woodward

    Hi, just do not get how this was not picked up earlier ,we have to have our equipment check twice a year by engineers ,surely they should of picked up the problem ???

    #190766 Reply

    The welds around the bosses of the central scissor pins have all cracked the whole way round. The hairline cracks then extend down from the pin boss into the steel scissor beam and continue across the bottom to the other side. Cracks alse extend upwards from the boss but aren’t as long. In some cases nearly 50% of the steel of the scissor beams have been cracked. Because of the grease coming form the pin and covering this area in a thin smear of grease it is not easily seen by an operator. The lifts are maintained by Maha Ireland. The DVA were notified of the cracks in November but were told by Maha Ireland that it wasn’t a safety issue at that time. From then the cracks have been growing obviously and it wasn’t until an independent inspector deemed the ramps unsafe. Maha Ireland then attempted to repair the scissor legs by welding a gusset plate to the outside of each scissor leg and welding over the cracks all done in situ. Without the ramp being dismantled the cracks were not ground out they were simply welded over and they continued to crack. The independent inspector then withdrew the safety certificate of the ramps. The ramps were due to be replaced this year and there is speculation that Maha were trying to cover up the fault in case the DVA would go to a different supplier due to these faults. The Maha ramps that the current ones replaced were over 10 years old and had no signs of cracking. The current faulty ramps are coming 8 years old.

    #190767 Reply
    Carl Brighty

    Hi Marko,
    Its great to see that someone has at last got some information as to what has happened??
    So we know its a MAHA product and I am sure MAHA will be under pressure to get this sorted!!!!
    MAHA do indeed sell the same products in the UK, therefore it would be good to know model numbers of the product and possibly photos of the problem, then we could inform UK users.
    Do we know the independent Insurance Company who found the fault and withdrew the safety certification??
    Whilst I have spoken to the GEA (Garage Equipment Association) about this matter and asked them to liaise with the HSE (Health & Safety Executive) nothing has been put on their Websites to date.
    This to me has become more concerning than ever, welding a plate for a “quick fix” doesn’t guarantee anyone’s safety.
    I really think the whole garage equipment industry could be reacting a lot faster than they are.
    Multitune GE Ltd

    #190768 Reply

    Just an update. The NCT in the south of Ireland have suspended all use of Maha scissor lifts.

    #190772 Reply
    Welsh Wizard

    Hi, as someone who has operated an independent garage for many years, our ramps have always had to have a 6 monthly by inspection Engineers employed by or behalf of our Insurers. Surely faults as serious as this would have been spotted some time ago on such an inspection? Also each site of the size in question must have someone responsible for Health & Safety or is NI under different rules??

    #190774 Reply
    Carl Brighty

    And the Fiasco continues ……………………………………….
    No Brand Names no model “LUCKILY NO DEATHS REPORTED”
    See Link : https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-northern-ireland-51273872
    Carl Brighty

    #190769 Reply
    Robert johnson

    had a scillor lift installed through snap on 12 months ago had on going problems ever since continuous oil leaks.One side top wheel table? not in line with other side hence jacking beam 2 inches dowh on one side.Even had one of the rams shear off at top pivot after only 2 months.Supposidly being replaced with an ungraded version by the manufactures been 12 months now and still waiting

    #191260 Reply
    Peter fearnley

    I’ve had a Hoffman Gemini scissor lift for probably 20 years in busy workshop not MOT lift last year cracks were noticed by insurance inspector I had it repaired by a “coded” welding company who simply ground into the cracks & welded right through them it’s since had 2 inspections & all is ok but I’m keeping a close watch on it

    #191810 Reply

    The reason that the BBC don’t mention the manufacturer is that their experts are convinced that the failure was caused by Brexit.

    #194849 Reply

    whats with all the talk over faults this had nothing to do with ramp faults but the main goal was to assist lockdown with the angle of no
    mots yet nobody seems to have put 2 and 2 together the ramps all did not crack at the same time look who owns them ? and look how all the centers have turned into in north ireland covid19 its just more preplanned government bullshit just like the contactless credit cards in mid 2019 for god sake join the dots people

Viewing 21 posts - 1 through 21 (of 21 total)


Reply To: Faults found on 48 out of 55 MOT lifts in Northern Ireland

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Have your say!

0 0

Lost Password

Please enter your username or email address. You will receive a link to create a new password via email.