The Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) are visiting all UK testing stations carrying out what is known as MoT Enforcement Transformation assessments (METs).
These compliance inspections check adherence to MoT regulations, and is a mandatory check for all testing stations.
However, during the visit, the vehicle examiner will also inspect non-MoT areas to try to ascertain what the likelihood is of future non-compliance to the MoT regulations.
Elements that assessors may look for include customer waiting areas, toilets, tea/coffee provision, building condition, maintenance, décor, tidiness and cleanliness.
VOSA have no power to take direct action against test stations for any perceived shortcomings in the non-MoT areas, but according to Stephen Coles, from the RMIF MoT Operations Team, the result may lead to a follow-on investigation: “VOSA can use this evidence to support a view that stations that fall short in these non-MoT areas lack a degree of professionalism in their approach to their staff and clients which may well be mirrored in the way that the MoT side of the business is run.
“Shortcomings noted during the risk assessment will be scored and if deemed significant, will lead to a higher than normal risk score. VOSA will then target stations that are viewed as high risk with increased inspections, mystery shoppers and targeted enforcement.”
VOSA’s assessments will be finished by March 2008 and testing stations will receive their grade later in the year.