DVSA Update – Failure to do an emission test during an MOT

DVSA Update – Failure to do an emission test during an MOT


The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) has advised that over recent months, they have seen an increase in the amount of exhaust emission tests during MOT not being conducted at sites, or records not being available when requested by vehicle examiners during visits. This has led to numerous disciplinary cases resulting in tester and authorised examiner cessations.

The DVSA acknowledges, that in relation to vehicle exhaust emissions, the road safety risk is negligible; however, environmental concerns have become a major focus of UK Government policy over recent years.

Currently this has gained greater significance, with concerns over health issues caused by vehicle emissions, and worries over ‘green house gases’ have gained momentum.

Failure to conduct emission tests to all relevant vehicles indicates testers do not satisfy all the requirements of the MOT Guide and Operating Instructions, meaning the legal requirements regarding emissions emitted from the exhaust tail pipe are not being monitored correctly at test stage.

It is vitally important that the general public are assured, that to protect the environment from vehicle borne emissions, checks are undertaken during the annual MOT test.

The MOT Testing Guide section H.5, Retention of Documentation states:

Emissions records from all test results, including all BET tests, must include all relevant vehicle details. Digitally stored emissions records are acceptable if the data is readily retrievable upon request.

If records are not available, either printouts or digitally retrieved, the DVSA could consider that the emission test was not conducted.

MOT testers must conduct all aspects of the MOT test in accordance with the inspection manual and MOT testing guide.

Authorised Examiners must ensure that all equipment is operating and maintained to the required standards.

Should digital records stored by an emission tester not be retrievable due to an error, this will be considered an emission tester malfunction and testing must stop until the equipment is properly repaired.

There is no excuse for not conducting emissions tests, and possible faulty equipment, or supposed lack of knowledge of equipment not storing information, will not be considered mitigation in any disciplinary case.

The DVSA has stated that if they find emission testing has not been carried out deliberately or through lack of care in ensuring data storage, this will be subject to formal disciplinary action which may result in cessation from testing.