Pink slip change worries mechanics

The government’s plans to make motor vehicle pink slips valid for six months has received a cautious approval from the NRMA.

Last week Roads Minister Duncan Gay announced changes to both pink slips and licences.

From next year drivers will be able to choose a 10-year licence, which is double the five-year maximum currently available.

The other change sees pink slips, required to register a vehicle more than five years old go from being valid for just six weeks to six months.

‘‘It’s all about removing red tape to save people time and money,’’ Mr Gay said.

Mechanics contacted by the Mercury expressed some concern about making pink slips valid for six months because a lot could go wrong in that time.

Some were also concerned about whether they could be held liable for issuing a roadworthy certificate for a vehicle that, five months later, becomes unroadworthy.

A Roads and Maritime Services spokeswoman said that was not an issue.

‘‘There will be no changes in liability for inspectors and expected benefits include AIS having greater flexibility in conducting safety inspections if done in conjunction with a vehicle service due to overlapping activities including testing,’’ the spokeswoman said.

‘‘Some vehicle owners may also choose to have their vehicles serviced more regularly which will bring associated road safety benefits.’’

She added that unroadworthy cars will still be the subject of police enforcement.

Motorists association NRMA spokesman Peter Khouri said the move did reduce red tape, which they saw as an advantage for their members.

‘‘If you’re a business running a fleet, it makes it a bit easier to get the pink slip and the rego done,’’ Mr Khouri said.

‘‘From that perspective we support it as it will just take a bit of pressure off motorists.

‘‘Like anything that is new we would urge the government to monitor its progress and do a review after 12 months to ensure that those safety concerns people have raised aren’t coming to life.’’

Mr Khouri said that most motorists are not likely to wait six months after getting a pink slip to register their vehicles.

‘‘I think the reality is for most people that waiting six months isn’t a viable option anyway,’’ he said.

‘‘Particularly if you’re running a fleet where you’ve got to register and pay for a number of vehicles to stay on the road.

‘‘So there’s that element to consider as well. Just because people have got six months, we’d certainly not encourage them to wait six months as a lot can happen in that time.’’


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