House of Lords – Delegated testing amendment – update July 13th 2020

Delegated testing amendment – update

ATFOA has recognised that the Business and Planning Bill, that was arguably being implemented to provide greater protection for DVSA has given us the perfect moment to present evidence, supported by ATFOA members and other major trade bodies, to argue that delegated testing is the only feasible solution to the historical challenges DVSA has had to supply testers and deliver a HGV and PSV tests to our sector.

The best vehicle that hi-lights our plights is DVSA’s and governments protectionism of their responsibilities since the COVID 19 pandemic: Our members have always maintained DVSA’s tester allocation process restricts supply of testers, and impacts on successful ATF’s ability to provide a service that befits their customer base.

However, since the re-introduction of testing, post lockdown, the evidence supports our position that DVSA and government have planned to further prioritise mitigating their risk over their responsibility to supply testers to our sector.

The irony, at this juncture, however, is strong. By attempting to introduce legislation that makes it easier for DVSA and government to exempt testing, they have unwittingly presented ATF’s with the opportunity to table an amendment.

Prior to this juncture, DVSA’s defence to change even minor issues was that legislation would need to be changed. Now they are reviewing the legislation we are able to question the logic of government’s insistence to use DSVA to carry out this ‘service’.

Lord Attlee articulates the flawed logic very well –

“The current situation is wrong. If a private individual can be certified to pass an aircraft as fit to fly and a 1,000 tonne crane can be inspected by a private sector operator, then why is it not the same for lorries?

Today the bill will be going through the committee stage, which is a line by line dissection of the bill, followed by the report stage, which is next Monday – which is when they will vote so is the deciding stage.

What’s the chances of ATFOA succeeding with changing the law to allow delegated testers?

We need cross party support so we have the odds against us, however, the bill has provided us with the most perfect storm to hi light our plight and force the government to defend their flawed logic, and they will not want to keep doing this, so there is a slim chance that we may succeed.

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