Last week the government announced that MOT tests in the UK from the 30th of March will be deferred for 6 months due to the Coronavirus outbreak. The changes are a reactive response which will allow vital workers to still go about their daily duties using their vehicles. This means that private hire cars, delivery drivers, healthcare workers and so on, can all proceed as normal.
The exemptions will apply to all cars, motorcycles and vans but the government has warned motorists that their vehicles must be kept to a roadworthy standard. Garages, workshops and repair centres will remain open to ensure that essential workers can have their vehicles repaired and maintained over the coming months.
Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: "We must ensure those on the frontline of helping the nation combat COVID19 are able to do so,"
"Safety is key, which is why garages will remain open for essential repair work."
Of course, there are legal issues that drivers must adhere to and it looks like these MOT changes will meet those demands. For example, if a car doesn’t have a valid MOT, then it is not technically insured to be on the road. The changes bypass that loophole by extending the life of current MOT certificates, instead of simply allowing cars to continue to use the road on expired certificates.
Extra precautions have already been put into place across the garage network in the UK after the guidance was published from the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency. This guidance includes the instruction to use seat covers and rubber gloves when operating on vehicles.
MOT testers have also been told not to print off MOT certificates needlessly unless the customer insists they need it for a specific reason. These MOT certificates can be printed off at home from here.
Garages across the country are being told to encourage the use of contactless payments as much as possible, in an effort to reduce the amount of cash being transacted between customers and employees. As of the 1st of April 2020, the government will be listing the limit on contactless payments from £30 to £45.