What are safety inspections?

  • A nominated person should be responsible for ensuring that a full schedule of inspections takes place on all passenger vehicles that you operate.  The operator of a vehicle has a legal duty of care to ensure that vehicles they operate are safe and do not pose a danger to anyone.

    Safety inspections are similar to an MOT and check the road safety items of the vehicle, they should be carried out by a competent person who is able to sign the inspection document to state that in their professional opinion the vehicle will remain safe and legal until the next scheduled safety inspection.

    A person undertaking safety inspections must be technically competent and operationally aware of the safety standards that apply to the vehicles they examine.  They should have been trained in the techniques of vehicle examination, diagnosis and reporting, and possess a sound working knowledge of the relevant inspection manuals produced by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) in Great Britain and the Driver and Vehicle Agency (DVA) in Northern Ireland.  A Safety inspector could prove technical competence by solely time served experience; however with modern vehicle systems and working practices it is strongly recommended that inspectors obtain relevant technical qualifications and achieve an automotive technical accreditation or meet a recognised quality standard for the vehicles they inspect.

    A safety inspector should not be expected to carry out repair or servicing work during the course of the safety check.

    In Northern Ireland a safety inspection must also include a brake test.

    Safety inspections should be carried out with a maximum interval between inspections of 10 weeks.  Vehicles that are 12 years old or older should be being safety inspected every 6 weeks.