The National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), the trade body representing commercial vehicle and franchised car retailers across the UK, is disappointed that the Department for Transport (DfT) make no plans to completely privatise Authorised Testing Facilities (ATFs) throughout the UK.

The NFDA has lobbied government for complete privatisation of ATFs. This would enable the facilities to employ their own staff instead of VOSA staff. This would result in greater flexibility and allow the facilities to meet the demands of the sector. However The DfT announced in a report today that they do not believe that a case has been made for testing staff to be employed directly by ATFs.

Sue Robinson, NFDA Director commented “Whilst the NFDA support many of the points made in today’s report, it does have concerns, namely the DfT’s refusal to acknowledge that the complete privatisation of AFTs is in the best interests of the commercial vehicle sector.

“The NFDA believe that the future of privately run ATF’s is dependent on the HGV testers being employees of the ATF. This would allow them to create a dealer facility that is a ‘one-stop-shop’ and can also offer 24/7 service to fleet operators.

“Future demand has been ignored as the introduction of EU Type approval starts next year when most new trucks will need to be tested prior to them being registered.

“We believe that full privatisation would also improve the effectiveness and efficiency of VOSA services for both industry and the consumer.

“In addition, an upgrade of VOSA's IT systems is well over due as there is an overwhelming need to integrate information needed by the DVLA and the DSA.”


NOTES TO EDITORS: Keely Scanlan, Press Officer Tel: 020 7307 3410 Mob: 07825097697 Press Office direct line: 020 7307 3422 Press Office fax: 020 7307 3406 Web: Email: The Retail Motor Industry represents the interests of operators in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man providing sales and services to motorists and businesses. The RMI has a formal association with the independent Scottish Motor Trade Association which represents the retail motor industry in Scotland.