DRIVERS will still need to get an MOT completed despite the coronavirus lockdown.
MOT garages have been deemed an “essential service” by the government, which means they’ll continue to stay open.
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It comes after the Prime Minister said yesterday that Brits will only be able to go to supermarkets, pharmacists, pet shops, hardware stores, and newsagents in an unprecedented high street shutdown.
MOT garages, Post Offices, and banks are also allowed to remain open.
Hours will, however, vary by garage as these are independently owned – so get in touch with your local to find out.
The Driver & Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) adds that car and motorbike owners still need to get their MOT done when it’s due, although this position is under review with an update expected in the next few days.
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All lorry, bus and trailer annual MOTs have been suspended from March 21 for three months because of the outbreak.
If you’re a car or motorbike owner and you’re self-isolating because of coronavirus, you can however delay your MOT and get it done once you’re better.
In this scenario, if your MOT expires you don’t need to notify anyone but you need to make an online application to take your vehicle off the road, also known as “SORN” (Statutory Off Road Notification).
You can’t drive elsewhere if your MOT has lapsed – you can only take your car to the garage once your period of isolation is over.
You can be fined up to £1,000 for driving a vehicle without a valid MOT.
Annual MOT tests check that your vehicle meets road safety and environmental standards.
The date it runs out is printed on your current MOT pass certificate.
You can get an MOT up to a month (minus a day) before it runs out and keep the same renewal date.
So if, for example, your MOT runs out on May 15, the earliest you can get an MOT to keep the same renewal date for next year is April 16.
Contact an MOT approved test centre to book your test – the maximum fee for a car is £54.85, while it’s £29.65 for a standard motorcycle.
Of course, you may have to pay extra if you vehicle ends up needing work done.
A DVSA spokesperson said: “Our priority is helping everyone keep their vehicle safe to drive, but drivers in self-isolation should not take their vehicle to be tested.
“Requirements relating to vehicle use and testing are currently under review in light of the coronavirus, with further updates to be provided in due course.”
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Vehicle approval tests, needed when you import, build, reconstruct or radically alter a vehicle, have also been suspended for up to three months.
We’ve asked the Department for Transport if vehicle tax has also been suspended but it appears you still need to pay this as normal.
MOT rules are different in Northern Ireland.