The government is being urged to cancel the six-month MOT extension with ‘immediate effect’, following the announcement of further social distancing measures will be relaxed from July 4.
The Independent Garage Association (IGA) believes now is the right time to lift the extension as the number of unroadworthy cars is rising.
‘People are being encouraged to use their cars to go shopping and go on days out to boost the economy, rather than use public transport,’ Stuart James, IGA chief executive, said.
‘However, the MOT extension has been in place since March and we now have a situation where there are approximately 1.6m unroadworthy cars in use on our roads.
‘The IGA has supported the government’s measures all the way through this pandemic and applauds the progress that has been made in controlling the spread of Covid-19. However, now that non-essential shops, leisure facilities and tourist destinations are reopening, it is not safe for cars to remain unchecked.
‘Garages are not “close proximity” venues. They have been allowed to remain open throughout the whole pandemic and are following official safe working guidelines, so the MOT exemption should be removed as soon as feasibly possible.
‘Ending the MOT extension is another positive step forward in the UK’s economic revival and will deploy people back into the workplace whilst underpinning road safety as traffic levels increase.’
The six-month MOT extension has been in place since March 30, and was brought in to help drivers who may not have been able to go out and get their cars tested.
Anyone with an MOT due in the next year automatically gets an extension of six months seven days before it is due.
Despite this there have still been 2,153,768 MOTs carried out since the start of April.
While that is five million fewer tests than the same period in 2019, it could be seen as proof drivers are still getting their cars tested and validating calls for the extension to be cancelled.
Hopes for a change to the six-month extension were raised last week when the DVSA cancelled the three-month extension in place for HGVs.
So far the government has been reluctant to make any changes to the six-month extension citing concerns it’ll lead to a spike in MOT tests later this year.
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