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MoT chaos: Belfast Telegraph asks the questions you want answered

Q How long is this period of repair and disruption to tests likely to last?

A There is no figure currently available — that work is all now under way by the Minister.


Q What is the projected cost of the repair/replacement of the lifts?

A That is all subject to the reviews the Minister has commissioned.


Q Who is going to be paying for the above — who is responsible?

A That is subject to the reviews


Q What is the current backlog at the moment — the previous crisis saw some people waiting more than 50 days for a test.

A I don’t have a figure. We are prioritising certain categories of vehicle.


Q The BBC reported signs of cracking were first discovered during an inspection of Larne MOT centre in November 2019. Why did you wait until now to cancel tests?

A The Minister has covered that in her speech yesterday.


Q Why was the issue only announced last week?

A Same as above.


Q How many lifts have collapsed —beyond the two-week period mentioned on the Nolan Show?

A We have had no lifts collapsed.


Q Have any staff been injured as a result? And how many staff are currently off?

A No staff injured.


Q What impact is this having on your workers?

A Tests are still ongoing for other vehicles. Test centres are still open and we are redeploying staff to where we need them. The Minister’s priority is to get people through the test.


Q What support is being offered to motorists? What advice do you have?

A If you have an MOT coming up and you have a reminder letter, book it, because otherwise if we later have to cancel your test you will not get that exemption certificate. For people booked this week the Minister has suspended testing. Those people with tests being cancelled are getting an exemption certificate. That will automatically go onto the computer system. It effectively extends your MOT for four months so you can go ahead and renew your tax. The point of contact for people is NI Direct.


Q If this test is so vitally important, how was the decision taken that the DVA can cancel it all of a sudden and give a waiver?

A I refer you back to the Minister’s statement and interviews yesterday. She is doing her utmost to minimise disruption to people. There is a responsibility for all drivers to ensure our cars are in a roadworthy condition. An MOT is one moment in time, a day or week later you are still expected to have a roadworthy vehicle.


Q Is there consideration given to privatising the matter i.e. allowing garages to carry out the MOT?

A I refer back to the Minister’s statements on that.


Q How long is this period of repair and disruption to tests likely to last?

A There is no figure currently available — that work is all now under way by the Minister.

Q What is the projected cost of the repair/replacement of the lifts?

A That is all subject to the reviews the Minister has commissioned.

Q Who is going to be paying for the above — who is responsible?

A That is subject to the reviews

Q What is the current backlog at the moment — the previous crisis saw some people waiting more than 50 days for a test.

A I don’t have a figure. We are prioritising certain categories of vehicle.

Q The BBC reported signs of cracking were first discovered during an inspection of Larne MOT centre in November 2019. Why did you wait until now to cancel tests?

A The Minister has covered that in her speech yesterday.

Q Why was the issue only announced last week?

A Same as above.

Q How many lifts have collapsed —beyond the two-week period mentioned on the Nolan Show?

A We have had no lifts collapsed.

Q Have any staff been injured as a result? And how many staff are currently off?

A No staff injured.

Q What impact is this having on your workers?

A Tests are still ongoing for other vehicles. Test centres are still open and we are redeploying staff to where we need them. The Minister’s priority is to get people through the test.

Q What support is being offered to motorists? What advice do you have?

A If you have an MOT coming up and you have a reminder letter, book it, because otherwise if we later have to cancel your test you will not get that exemption certificate. For people booked this week the Minister has suspended testing. Those people with tests being cancelled are getting an exemption certificate. That will automatically go onto the computer system. It effectively extends your MOT for four months so you can go ahead and renew your tax. The point of contact for people is NI Direct.

Q If this test is so vitally important, how was the decision taken that the DVA can cancel it all of a sudden and give a waiver?

A I refer you back to the Minister’s statement and interviews yesterday. She is doing her utmost to minimise disruption to people. There is a responsibility for all drivers to ensure our cars are in a roadworthy condition. An MOT is one moment in time, a day or week later you are still expected to have a roadworthy vehicle.

Q Is there consideration given to privatising the matter i.e. allowing garages to carry out the MOT?

A I refer back to the Minister’s statements on that.

Belfast Telegraph