RHA chief executive, Richard Burnett has written to roads minister Baroness Vere strongly voicing the concerns of the RHA and its members about DVSA’s approach to roadworthiness testing.
Commenting, Richard Burnett said: “Even before COVID-19 took hold we were concerned about the relaxation of testing and DVSA’s approach. At a time when our industry is having to maintain vehicles to keep food and medicines moving, surely now is the time for decisive action to reintroduce, in June or July, delegated HGV testing.
“There is a growing sense that DVSA has failed to consider and deal with the suspension of roadworthiness testing in a reasonable way. Their behaviour in dealing with this issue and the lack of consideration for the needs of Authorised Test Facilities and hauliers throughout this crisis is simply unacceptable.”
HGV testing is an essential part of managing road safety and operators are pushing hard to gain clarity for when the suspension will be lifted for their operational planning. ATF businesses have also been closed by DVSA’s actions with no right of appeal and no suggested alternatives.
When testing recommences from what, in effect, will be a standing start, the RHA is concerned that there will be an immediate backlog due to an insufficient number of DVSA examiners available to meet demand.
Concluding, Richard Burnett said: “Our proposal for delegated testing is not new. But despite making many requests to DVSA to authorise qualified people to test trucks and trailers at ATFs, in addition to DVSA’s own employees, we are still at an impasse.
“Clearly our preference would be for this to be a permanent measure, but right now, it provides a good, short-term solution to get testing up and running quickly”.