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Home >> Local News >> Local News

Wof changes a 'double blow'

Posted at 11:58am Sunday 27 Jan, 2013 | By Zoe Hunter zoe@thesun.co.nz

The Motor Trade Association says the Government's new changes to the country's vehicle testing system are a causing a ‘double blow for motorists.'

The new wof changes are being dubbed a 'double blow' for motorists.

While providing the appearance of saving time and money, the changes may in fact increase costs and the risks to motorists, while at the same time lead to the loss of more than 2,000 jobs from within the automotive industry according to MTA.

The key changes to the warrant of fitness system include an initial inspection for new cars, followed by annual inspections once vehicles are three years old, annual inspections for vehicles three years and older and first registered on or after January 1 2000; six-monthly inspections for vehicles first registered before January 1 2000 including information and education to increase people's awareness of regular vehicle maintenance and extra police enforcement activities.

The new changes are expected to come into force in July next year.

MTA says under the proposal put forward by Associate Minister of Transport Simon Bridges earlier today, motorists will only require six-monthly checks for vehicles registered after January 1 2000.

The new changes mean the majority of the fleet will move to 12-monthly WoF inspections. A double blow for motorists, says MTA.

MTA spokesperson Ian Stronach says the opportunity for Vehicle Licensing Reform providing New Zealand with a unique opportunity to bring meaningful change to a range of key elements of the wider licensing system has been deferred.

“Instead we have a piecemeal deconstruction of the vehicle inspection regime that has served and protected motorists well for many years.”

With inspections for vehicles 13 years and newer, to be required every 12 months, Ian says many vehicles will now be travelling twice the distance and going twice as long before undergoing the minimum safety check.

He says many drivers rely on safety checks as their primary safety and operational assurance.

“In an automotive environment like ours, that is too long and too far. Minor repairs will turn into major work, negating any theoretical savings.” 

Ian says New Zealand's fleet is old and ageing rapidly, and the Government's preferred option provides little real confidence that enforcement and educational capability will be properly increased to manage the risks.

“Surely the onus must be on improving safety levels, not eroding them. 

“Even recently released research, co-sponsored by the New Zealand Transport Agency, casts doubt on the likely outcome and cost of the changes being proposed.

“If the so called experts aren't sure of what might happen, why are we pushing ahead?”

“At a time when Government is looking for ways to reduce costs to motorists it has been quite prepared to increase fuel taxes and advise that they will continue to rise in the coming years.

“It seems that it's quite prepared to reduce costs for motorists as long as it doesn't affect Government income.”

Ian says the Government could have streamlined New Zealand's cumbersome annual licensing process, made individual motorists more accountable for the risks they represent and improved the integrity of the existing inspection process.

“Instead they are selling this reform to New Zealanders on the back of the potential that they can save themselves around $50 a year.” 

He says having to carry out fewer inspections will mean some providers will simply opt out of the business, meaning some motorists will have to travel further and take more time to have an inspection carried out.

“It will also only add to the jobless total, while pushing more skilled people out of the industry.

“The Government seems obsessed with the principle that, because New Zealand's inspection regime is unique, it needs to be changed.

“That's a very narrow view which they don't apply consistently. Ultimately, this decision sells all New Zealanders short.”

 


COMMENTS

if only you guys knew..

Posted on 30-01-2013 12:11 | By horse

what we see everyday! so many cars that are "new" ie 2010 and they are failing on seatbelts and brakes... things that are important! if they change the wof system you can almost certainly gaurentee that there will be more road accidents.. in time leading to higher acc levies.. claimed back through the rego. why not make insurance compulsory and then kiwis can complain about the cost of running a car! gas is cheap as over here compared to some countries (the uk) and insurance is also major cheap! they want to encourage people to buy newer cars.. then drop the price! we pay almost double for a small hatch that what they do in europe. leave the wof alone as old jap crap that exists out here needs it! we see about 40% of cars a day fail! thats a very high percent!! wouldnt want on eof them running up the ass end of my car thank you very much!

MTA OWN VTNZ

Posted on 29-01-2013 14:40 | By Can do it

AND charge local garages horrendous fees to be a member of their forced regime. It is great that they are getting hit the hardest by their Government taking their almost monopoly income from them. Bring on the honesty. As said earlier people who do not get their wof checks done by due date ALWAYS will be the same so the Police might finally learn how to check a car for safety instead of for failing to comply with some other idiot law like flags on boats!!

Double Blow ......... Yeah Right !!!

Posted on 29-01-2013 13:48 | By gothebay

Thank God, this is one policy that NZ motorist should be happy with. The WOF system was in need of big change! I find WOF on new cars are pretty silly, and pretty much a waste of time and money! Good on the government for getting some savings for NZer's, it 's hard enough out there at the moment. As with the comment from MTA/LTSA about "2000 jobs lost" that is a pure nonsense figure, but even if it was true their argument is flawed. The purpose of a WOF Check is not to create jobs for garages, if that was the purpose we would have monthly checkups. The AA has commented (no commercial interests involoved like MTA/LTSA) NZ has the most frequent safety inpection in the world. No other country requires cars aged 6 years or older to be tested twice a year. Some countries have annual inspections, others like Australia, and the United States have no regular inspection at all. Yet despite all the differences in inspection frequency the number of crases caused by vehcile faults in NZ is about the same as other countries at about 2.5%, or less than 0.5% where it is the sole cause. The writing is on the wall!

BOOHOO VTNZ

Posted on 27-01-2013 23:10 | By ETAK73

roger1 you are correct VTNZ is owned by the MTA, the ones that have been kicking up a stink since this can to light, VTNZ/MTA its called karma, pitty the workers who will lose jobs but that wont worry VTNZ.

wof

Posted on 27-01-2013 22:44 | By Blessed

they should leave WOF as it is and drop the Registration price... i had tyres that past a WOF but they guy told me to change 2 that were borderline within the next 6 months, (so i did)if WOF goes to 12months, i beleive it will be a safety risk

New vehicles are also a problem.

Posted on 27-01-2013 17:28 | By dgk

Will be interesting to see all the denied insurance claims that result from new vehicles that aren't in warrantable condition.

Government are

Posted on 27-01-2013 15:55 | By bigted

damned if they change this and damned if they don't.

The changes are sensible

Posted on 27-01-2013 14:54 | By Phailed

Modern cars don't require WOFs for the first few years. People who are going to drive round on bald tires will do so anyway because they don't get WOFs or registrations anyway. Crack down on criminals in cars and leave ordinary people alone. Well done to the Government on making these sensible changes.

Same old*********

Posted on 27-01-2013 13:53 | By penguin

There is absolutely nothing new here. Quote from the article in Sunlive...Quote: “Even recently released research, co-sponsored by the New Zealand Transport Agency, casts doubt on the likely outcome and cost of the changes being proposed. “If the so called experts aren't sure of what might happen, why are we pushing ahead?” Once again we see the government and the' illustrious' Mr Bridges denying facts that come from their own co-sponsored research. We have seen this throughout the proposed education changes where facts have been ignored and policy has been developed because “we can do things better here than other countries!” COME ON NZ – TIME TO WAKE UP AND MOUNT THE COUNTER ATTACK OR WE WILL GET WHAT WE DESERVE VIA OUR COMPLACENCY!!

wof

Posted on 27-01-2013 13:02 | By roger1

I think if i remember rightly vtnz is owned by the mta they are not worried about the motorist as they claim it"s money lost,it appears to work in aussie bring it on,about time the average motorist got to save some money

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