It has been reported that the breakdown of lifts in MOT centres prior to Covid and then the reduced capacity for testing during the pandemic has left a huge backlog in bookings with many people unable to secure slots before their MOT certificate or Road Tax expire.
Speaking about the issue, Andrew said “I understand the DVA has worked hard to increase capacity but I’m concerned that we still aren’t getting on top of the problem. I am contacted frequently by people who have been unable to secure an appointment before their MOT certificate expires, or have been left unable to renew their vehicle tax and incurred fines because of this.
“Despite increasing capacity at test centres the situation doesn’t appear to be improving and in light of this I wrote to the Permanent Secretary of the Department for Infrastructure to raise my concerns. Emergency MOT appointments are apparently available to people who are within 5 days of their road tax expiring but it appears many people are struggling to access this service and are then incurring fines for their vehicles being untaxed.
“This is the last thing people need at the moment in the midst of a cost of living crisis. DVLA Swansea manage Road Tax fines and have repeatedly told people who have been in contact they will not rescind these for drivers in Northern Ireland despite the ongoing issues accessing MOT appointments here. It’s unacceptable, and we need to see swift improvement and definitive measures taken by the Department to actively manage this situation.”