May 26, 2023
The MOT is crucial in ensuring vehicle safety and roadworthiness. However, despite timely reminders, over 30% of motorists in the UK get their MOT done after the due date. The recent government consultation on the future of the MOT acknowledged the need for more effective measures to encourage timely action from vehicle owners. In this blog post, we will explore existing strategies and potential solutions to promote MOT compliance, along with the key suggestions provided in the consultation.
The are many reasons why someone may arrange their MOT late. Some common factors include lack of awareness, procrastination, lack of time, forgetfulness, poor organisation, logistical challenges, financial constraints, concerns about the vehicle’s condition and worry over the cost of repairs. It is clear at the moment there are no tangible consequences for failing to get an MOT done on time, and as such, it can be easily put off until later by vehicle owners. Encouraging timely MOT completion is crucial to address these factors.
The government introduced the MOT checking service [https://www.check-mot.service.gov.uk/] in 2018. This online service allows you to look up MOT details for any vehicle and has proven popular with vehicle owners. Whilst initially more rudimentary, this service now shows the entire MOT history of any vehicle, including the detail on advisories, reasons for failure, and the date and location of every test (if you provide a valid V5C number for the vehicle). This practical resource helps vehicle owners learn when their MOT is due, promotes transparency, and assists potential car buyers in making informed decisions.
Another online MOT checking service option is to sign up for additional reminders via email or text on top of the postal reminders, which the DVSA sends to the vehicle’s registered address. Mobile apps can also help vehicle owners learn about MOT history and set up phone reminder notifications. Prompt reminders are crucial to encouraging timely MOTs and can significantly increase compliance rates.
Regarding reminders, collaborating with service centres and garages to actively remind customers about upcoming MOT deadlines benefits both partners. Some garages already send out MOT reminders, a sensible marketing strategy for increasing business revenue. The DVSA could mandate this action by garages raising driver awareness via an additional channel, prompting timely testing, and improving MOT compliance rates. Another collaborative option the DVSA could expand is partnering with car insurance providers who could incorporate reminders and incentives into insurance policies.
You can only take an annual car insurance policy if you have a current MOT on the vehicle. However, the MOT can expire during the period of insurance with no consequences. Suppose the insurance company added an extra levy to your policy in the case of an expired MOT or offered discounted insurance premiums if your MOT remains valid throughout the policy. These kinds of incentives can motivate drivers to complete their MOT on time.
Conversely, penalties for late testing, such as fines, temporary vehicle registration suspension, or invalidation of one’s insurance policy, would deter non-compliance. One proposal discussed in the consultation was imposing automatic penalties on drivers caught on camera using a vehicle without a valid MOT. While this approach would likely be an effective deterrent, multiple implementation complexities exist. Drivers may legally drive a vehicle with an expired MOT to a garage to fix the failed defects or to conduct a test. Blanket penalties, therefore, may be unsuitable unless they include a robust appeals process in the case of travel to a garage. Striking the right balance between penalties and considering individual circumstances is essential.
Ensuring drivers complete their MOT on time is crucial for maintaining vehicle roadworthiness and road safety. While existing measures like MOT reminders have been partially effective, there is a need for further improvements and innovative approaches. Driver awareness is vital in improving MOT compliance. Utilising various media channels, including TV, radio, social media, and billboards, can help drivers understand the importance of timely MOT completion, legal obligations, and potential consequences of non-compliance.
Incorporating suggestions from the 2023 government consultation, such as exploring automatic penalties, could contribute to higher compliance rates. By combining these ideas with collaborative efforts, public awareness campaigns, and a balanced approach to incentives and penalties, we can create an environment where drivers prioritise the timely completion of their MOT, ultimately leading to safer roads for all.
MOT Juice updates your MOT business with industry news and the latest testing regulations and guidance. With MOT Juice, you can streamline your VTS compliance processes, reduce your administrative burden, and focus on delivering the highest quality service to your customers. Whether in a small independent garage or a large dealership garage, our compliance features can help you stay compliant and avoid penalties.
Our compliance platform displays your critical data in easy-to-read traffic light KPIs. The platform keeps a digital audit trail of all compliance activities. Evidencing your compliance for the VE is as easy as logging on. Automatic notifications advise you on actions required to remain compliant, mitigating human error and business risk.
Try MOT Juice for free for 30 days and experience the benefits for yourself!