Our government’s recent review of Warrant of Fitness (Wof) policy has given rise to the curious notion, fostered by the Automobile Association, that road safety will be improved, or at least maintained, through a dramatic reduction in Wof testing. Really? Yes, in future all motorists will carefully monitor their tyres condition and will always fit new tyres when their vehicles tyres are below 1.5 mm of tread or are rendered unserviceable due to sidewall cuts or cracking or when a tyre is out of round etc. By a curious stroke of the pen, motorists now have 1 to 3 years to find and rectify vehicle faults which they previously could not find within 6 months.
In reality, the average motorist will never notice such tyre defects; instead of these faults being detected at a maximum of 6 months duration, they now have 12 months or even three years to fester and develop into a life threatening situation. All of this is self evident to anyone in the tyre and Wof trades, everyone that is except the Automobile Association.
Back in November 2012, The AA’s argument was that only 5.4% of crashes are caused by vehicle defects and that 39% of these vehicles had no WOF and 52% of them had a tyre fault. The AA was supported by Transport Officials who said increasing the time between WOF (Warrant of Fitness) checks would cause only a few extra deaths per year. Well, those few extra dead people sure will be grateful for this news. Bettertyres wonders if their relatives and friends will agree?
For sure, people will die as a consequence of this new policy edict.