Thousands more MOT tests cancelled as inspections of all cars and light vehicles suspended again across Northern Ireland

Thousands more MOTs are to be cancelled from today following a shock announcement that all car and light vehicle tests are to be cancelled with immediate effect.

Tuesday, 28th January 2020, 8:46 am
Updated Wednesday, 29th January 2020, 12:36 pm
The MOT centre in Newbuildings. (Google Earth)

Paul Duffy, Chief Executive of the Driver and Vehicle Agency, made the announcement just days after a previous suspension which saw thousands of tests cancelled across Northern Ireland due to faults found in 48 of the 55 car lifts used at the various centres,

Mr Duffy said that following further inspections of lift faults in MOT centres, there was not sufficient assurance to DVA on the effectiveness of the ongoing repairs.

It is not yet clear how a situation came about that the vast majority of lifts in Northern Ireland were deemed to be faulty at the same time.

Mr Duffy said: “To ensure the health and safety of staff and customers and as a precautionary measure, DVA has suspended all MOT testing for cars and light vehicles with immediate effect. Tests on heavy goods vehicles and buses will continue.

“Anyone scheduled for a car or light vehicle MOT should not attend. All customers, except customers with four year old vehicles and taxis, will be automatically issued an MOT exemption certificate and therefore can continue to drive. The exemption will be recorded in the DVA system and a hard copy will arrive by post in the coming days.

“For customers with four year old vehicles and taxis, we are working to urgently find a solution to get these vehicles through MOT and will contact customers directly.”

The DVA has said it will issue a further statement as a matter of urgency to advise these customers and those who have MOTs booked for later this week.

“We want to advise customers that more cancellations are very likely,” Mr Duffy said, adding: “The DVA recognises the considerable inconvenience and disruption this will cause for many people and sincerely apologises that it has been unable to rectify this situation more quickly.

“Given the urgency of this situation, we are asking the public to follow media, social media channels and nidirect for updates. Staff will also be kept fully informed by their centre managers.

“The Minister has held an urgent meeting with officials this evening in relation to this matter.”