Proposed MOT changes are a ‘dangerously bad idea’

MOT testing station

The government’s proposals to decrease the cost of living by changing the mandatory MOT from once a year to once every two years have caused considerable worries among drivers.

A resounding majority of motorists (98%) who participated in a RAC survey of 1,435 said they thought it would increase the number of hazardous vehicles on the road.

Furthermore, 20% of respondents believed it would result in more accidents on the roads. Almost two-thirds (61%) believe it would result in more automobiles breaking down.

Over half (55%) of respondents believed it was a poor idea to change the MOT to every two years, while slightly over a fifth (22%) thought it was a good idea and a comparable percentage (23%) were undecided.

And, even if the Government’s proposal is aimed as a solution to reduce financial constraints in the cost-of-living crisis, drivers are also not convinced about the probable money-saving benefits.

A majority of drivers (58%) fear that the modifications may result in higher long-term costs for them as a result of faults or flaws that go unnoticed and become more expensive to fix. Additionally, 44% think that garages may raise prices for other repairs in order to make up for lost revenue from doing fewer MOTs.

Of the fifth of drivers who think the changes are a good idea, more than half (54%) think they will save money and three-quarters (74%) feel newer automobiles are more dependable and do not require yearly inspections. A self-assured 41% of respondents said the RAC they do an annual formal roadworthiness check on their car and don’t need to pay for someone to do it.

After the first registration, an automobile needs to be tested every three years and then annually after that. Currently, the maximum cost for cars (class 4 vehicles) is £54.80, although many garages provide the test for less money. The type of vehicle affects price.

Since its implementation in the UK in 1960, the MOT has included more tests to its scope. For example, in 2018 the list of elements that must be examined was increased to include car emissions.

In May 2018, it experienced a significant overhaul as well, switching to a new five-category system from a straightforward pass or fail with advisories. Major and dangerous failures were divided into two classes, and three pass categories were added: pass, pass with minor defects, and a pass with advisories.

“There is a real danger that if the Government proceeds with these proposals that we could see an increase in collisions, more injuries and deaths due to more unroadworthy vehicles using our roads, and an overall reduction in road safety,” stated Nicholas Lyes, head of roads policy at the RAC.

“We’ve written to the new Secretary of State for Transport and urged her to consign this idea to the bin and look at other ways to help cash-strapped drivers reduce their motoring costs.”

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