In light of the coronavirus crisis, the Government has released a range of temporary measures to help boost the economy and support key workers in the fight against the virus.
One of the more recent measures to be announced was a MOT extension from 30th March, meaning that MOT due dates for cars, motorcycles and light vehicles would be temporarily extended for 6 months, with the view of enabling drivers to continue to travel safely where absolutely necessary.
However, this move has been criticised by motoring bodies, who predict that it will result in a spike of dangerous cars on the road and could cause cash flow issues for independent garages.
Find out more about the extension, what it means for drivers and if you can still get your car booked in for a MOT, service or repair in our latest blog post.
How the Extension Works
If your car, van or motorcycle’s MOT is due after 30th March 2020, it will be extended by 6 months, the extension applies to all vehicles, even those that have never had a MOT test before; this measure will be in place for 12 months.
Drivers should note that the vehicle due MOT after the 30th of March will only get the extension about 7 days prior to the expiry of its MOT, not all vehicles get it immediately.
‘Allowing this temporary exemption from vehicle testing will enable vital services such as deliveries to continue, frontline workers to get to work, and people get essential food and medicine.
‘Safety is key, which is why garages will remain open for essential repair work.’
Grant Shapps – Transport Secretary
Garages Will Remain Open
Vehicle garages like Autocare Centre Chepstow will remain open in line with the Government guidelines as they are classed as essential businesses.
At the time of writing, we are fully open for MOTs, servicing and repairs to ensure that essential journeys such as commuting for front line key workers, deliveries, stock fulfilment and transportation of goods.
You Still Need to Ensure Your Car Is Roadworthy
Despite the extension, people must understand that they are still responsible for keeping their car in a safe and roadworthy condition. Failure to do so can result in fines of up to £2,500, 3 penalty points and even being banned from driving.
Whilst we would expect to see some leniency, if your MOT is due and you are concerned about the condition of your car, we highly recommend you have your MOT test carried out as usual or do not drive it.
If you’re unsure about whether or not your vehicle is roadworthy, use the GOV UK website to check if your vehicle is safe to drive. Alternatively, give us a call on 01291 627137 and book your vehicle in for a check-up.
The Move Has Been Criticised by The Independent Garage Association
The Independent Garage Association (IGA) which represents independent garages in the UK has welcomed most of the measures the Government has put in place, but warns that the six month MOT extension could have repercussions.
As well as warning that the extension is likely to result in a huge increase of cars on the road in an unroadworthy condition, they have also warned that the extension could cause serious cash flow issues for independent garages that rely on MOTs as a source of income.
Instead, they are urging for the Government to start with an initial six week MOT extension period which is reviewed on a weekly basis.
Extra Measures in Place at Autocare
In order to keep staff and customers safe throughout this unprecedented time, we have put in a number of extra precautions in place to limit contact and keep vehicles clean whilst carrying out our service, these include:
- We will limit physical contact e.g. by not shaking hands
- We will aim to keep a distance of two meters from our customers
- We will use gloves when handling your car from start to finish
- We will clean the steering wheel, door handles, car keys etc. before returning
- We are increasing our cleaning responsibilities at the garage by regularly cleaning door handles, public and work areas
- We are washing our hands regularly and using hand sanitiser to disinfect
- Customers will be allowed into reception but not inside the workshop
Additionally, for vulnerable customers, we can provide a collection and return service for your car to eliminate human contact entirely. Our mechanics will take precautions to ensure that your vehicle is cleaned before being returned.
MOTs, Servicing and Repairs at Autocare Centre Chepstow
We are here for our customers during this difficult time and will aim to provide our service as long as it is safe to do so. If you do need a MOT, we would recommend that you have it done if you intend to drive your vehicle regularly.
To find out more about our services, give one of our team a call today on 01291 627137 or use our contact form and we’ll get back to you.
ALL INFORMATION CORRECT AT THE TIME OF WRITING