Saved by WoF checks, say motorists
Sun, 23 Sep 2012 6:03p.m.
By Brook Sabin
Two people who say warrant of fitness checks saved their lives are urging the Government to back away from radical proposals to overhaul the system.
This week it was announced major changes are being considered, which could dramatically reduce the number of warrants over a vehicle's lifetime.
Roger Clarke nearly had a horror accident almost a year ago. He had just had his brakes fixed after he failed a warrant of fitness.
“They were 100 percent defunct,” he says. “They were absolutely useless.”
But when a car pulled in front of him, he hit the brakes. He screeched to a stop just centimetres in front of the barrier.
He says he wouldn't be here if it weren't for the warrant.
“I shook the hands of the guy who did the warrant and said ‘thank you for saving my life’.”
Mr Clarke is concerned by proposals announced this week to reduce the number of inspections. Options include dropping six-monthly checks in favour of annual inspections, or just getting a warrant each time a car is sold.
“All of the models that the Ministry have been looking at acknowledge there is a risk to road safety around that,” says VTNZ chief executive Mike Walsh.
Karen Toneycliffe had a car pull in front of her two weeks ago – days after a warrant, which picked up a badly worn seatbelt.
“At approximately 110km/h we collided, and I believe the seatbelt saved my life,” she says.
Ms Toneycliffe has a simple message for the Government.
“I think they should leave it exactly the way it is. I think it's safer for everyone.”
But maintaining the status quo is highly unlikely, given the Government has spent big money considering new options. Associate Minister of Transport Simon Bridges maintains fewer inspections won't necessarily lead to more crashes.
Post a Comment
Before commenting, please take the time to read our moderation guide
(Won't be published)
22/10/2012 6:33:26 a.m.
Hearher Turnbulli wrote:
Some years ago in Florida they abolished the need for frequent car warrants . We were concerned that there would be "old wrecks" on the road and that we would all be at risk but it didn't seem to make any difference. The result was that people didn't have to go to the trouble and expense of taking their vehicles through the test but continued to maintain them as per usual.
19/10/2012 11:48:21 a.m.
Karen Toneycliffe wrote:
To follow up on this article, we found an article in the International Express, dated October 10, 2012
Here is a link to the article:
It seems that it is world-wide, not just NZ that this issue is prominent!!
More reason for NZ to push keeping WoF the same as they are now, not changing anything, least of all the frequency, for everyone's safety!!!
12/10/2012 3:55:02 p.m.
Kim Ellis wrote:
I wish for the status Quo ie regular warrant of Fitness should remain the same.
Registration remain the same also. I don't want the government trying to change it.
11/10/2012 11:23:37 a.m.
Yes change it. The MTA are only fighting this to save money. The 270,000 cars that don't have warrant is now is not going to change if there is a change to the warrant of fitness regime. In fact some may get warrants if they know cost would be annual rather than six monthly. However most don't have a warrant because their vehicle is faulty anyway and can't afford to fix it.One reader claimed his brakes were useless before he got a warrant of fitness and it saved his life. He should not have been driving around with faulty brakes in the first place. It is still the vehicle owners’ responsibility to ensure the vehicle is in a warrantable state before going on the road. Any fault should be repaired immediately it is noticed. If all people maintain their cars like they should do them the road toll should not change.I think the warrant of fitness should be every two years for cars no older than six years or 30,000 kms whichever comes first and annually or every 20,000 kms whichever comes first for all other vehicles.I also think enforcement should be stricter. Any vehicle caught on the road without registration or warrant of fitness should be impounded for 28 days and not released until the car is bought up to a roadworthiness state.One of the major issues we should be debating is compulsory third-party insurance for all vehicles. This will effectively lower the horrendous cost for ensuring a vehicle as it is today.
7/10/2012 9:51:39 p.m.
Mike Cullen wrote:
Its foolish to think that the proposed changes to the WOF laws will not result in the deaths of even more people on our roads. At a time when we have all been making changes to reduce the road toll, and have seen the work done by the government to save lives, here we are relaxing the laws that keep our cars safe. I am a mechanic that has been working on cars for the past 20yrs. People do not maintain their cars to a safe condition, in fact it is only a WOF inspection that forces people to do anything at all. If the laws are changed that result in fewer inspections,for the sake of only a few dollars saved,the increase in all accidents on our roads will be heartbraking.I like driving,I like cars,dont kill me or my family because some people think it costs too much to have a car, WALK.
7/10/2012 8:39:12 p.m.
Harry Fox wrote:
Roger clark should have his drivers licence cancelled for life as he says his brakes were 100% defunked.If it takes a warrent check for him to discover that his brakes are not working he should never be allowed to drive ever again.In NSW they have safty checks or wofs every year in QLD only when the vehical is sold.I have seen the QLD Police commissioner on TV claiming there is no difference in numbers of vehical accidents caused by defects in both States.Most people will get defects fixed there will allways be a few who will drive unregistered and unroadworthy vehicals
Harry (over 5,000,000 accident free Ks)
7/10/2012 8:22:34 p.m.
Mark Bridgewater wrote:
Old cars will not be on our roads for much longer , as the gas testing of the emisiuns get tighter , old cards will just be to expensive to keep on the road, just look at the UK there are very few cars over 6 years old on the road so , no wof for the first 2 years, and then every year is not going to a problem, the bigest problem your have is what to do with all the old cars in this country....
30/09/2012 9:27:34 p.m.
During a recent TV interview a representative from the AA which who also own vehicle testing stations was not in favour of the proposed changes nor was the representative from the Motor Trade Association which own VTNZ with approximately 86 testing stations throughout NZ. How could any company give an honest unbiased opinion when these proposals will have a major affect on their bottom line. A lot of what I read is sheer scaremongering from companies and individuals only looking at their drop in income. It is about time owners took some responsibility for keeping their vehicles in good road-worthy condition. And for those people who do not like the idea of a yearly wof they can still pay for a wof every six months. What a lot of people do not realize is that when inspecting a motor vehicle as per the VIRM it is inspected in the condition presented. It either passes or fails. If there is an item which is wearing and won't last long such as a tyre, the check sheet can have a note written in the comments e.g RR Tyre Wearing, Near Legal Limit.
28/09/2012 4:22:59 p.m.
Ian S wrote:
At a time when Government has made such good progress in reducing the road toll it’s hard to understand why they are considering such changes. Their own data shows that over the next decade, depending on which option is chosen, we can expect between 7 and 84 additional fatalities and between 16 and 179 additional serious injuries. They believe that they will be able to mitigate against these risks through measures like additional enforcement and educating motorists about the benefits of regular vehicle maintenance and servicing.
Given the time and money it has taken to effect some change in attitudes to drink driving in this country, that seems like an optimistic view. The thing is, if they aren’t able to mitigate against these risks, then the price for some people will be just too high.
24/09/2012 5:15:36 p.m.
Been in the motor trade for 45 years, and during that time have seen some really unsafe vehicles. Brought a customors car back to the workshop last week and it hadn't had a W.O.F. for 18 months but Solo mum was still driving on... Disc pads had worn away on R/F and FALLEN OUT. Piston in caluper was grinding into the disc, and as brakes were POOR she had topped it up with Auto Trans fluid... Just think folks this is coming at you a 100 kph, and if brakes grabbed it would go ANYWHERE...!!! Keep the W.O.F. at 6 months and newer cars a 12 months... Also, have MORE random vehicle checks, especially in small towns where locals drive unregd and unWOFed cars... As a Panelbeater I think that all vehicles should have Third party Insurance.. Cheers, James.
Two waterspouts have been spotted over Auckland this afterno...
Once again Campbell Live has a very powerful caravan of opin...
Only a handful of skydivers have survived what happened to L...
Viewers overwhelming voted yes to decriminalising soft drugs...
Copyright © 2013 MediaWorks TV. All Rights Reserved.