Flanders agrees on car re-inspection by approved repairers

At the demand of Flemish Mobility Minister Lydia Peeters, the Flemish government has consented to a five-year pilot project allowing approved repairers to proceed to certain car re-inspections. The project aims to reduce the waiting lines and times at the official inspection centers. After evaluation, another 5 years can be added.

The Minister expects that 300,000 cars annually will shift from the official inspection centers to the approved repairers/inspectors. On the other hand, the inspection centers will be allowed to do some small repairs themselves. The government still has to decide which re-inspections can be transferred and how the repairers can get approval, and how they will be monitored.

A better service

With this decision, we aim for a more qualitative service for the Flemish citizens without giving in to the objectivity and quality of the controls and the importance of road security,”  says Peeters. “This project goes hand in hand with the planned change in periodicity (inspection every two years instead of one) in view of a more comfortable and efficient time use for the Flemish car owners.”

Sector federation Traxio is happy with the decision. “This is a positive evolution for the consumer and for the entire sector of dealers, repair shops, tire, and car glass providers; it’s also a boost and an extra service for the clients, ” says Filip Rylant, the spokesman at Traxio.

“Traxio engages its full cooperation in ensuring professional service, quality, safety, and objectivity. The consumer will have a large and qualitative network of repairers at his/her disposal.”

Filip Rylant (Traxio) and Minister Lydia Peeters are happy with the project /Traxio

Which re-inspections?

The focus will be on the re-inspections that deliver the biggest capacity gain, and that can be executed by a large number of repairers. Traxio thinks of problems with tires, wheels, mirrors, lights, reflectors, windows, exhaust, fenders, etc.

The following inspections or re-inspections are excluded: inspection of second-hand cars for sale, re-inspection of a car involved in an accident, and inspection of motorcycles. Approved repairers can be paid for their services, but the job can’t cost more than the official re-inspection tariff (€15,40 at the moment).

Approved repairers are supposed to sign an ethical charter and have followed theoretical and practical training. These trainings still need to be organized. The Mobility Department will use inspections, controls, audits, and data analysis to oversee and control the proceedings.

Approved repairers will intervene in re-inspections that deliver the biggest capacity gain /Traxio

Inspection centers are less amused

GOCA, the sector federation for car inspection centers, has some remarks on the project. First, several governmental institutions will still have to approve it before it can be rolled out. Secondly, GOCA thinks that “the core business of car inspection (objectivity, independence, and impartiality) are not guaranteed. The control mechanism proposed is insufficient.”

According to GOCA, the project will fit a limited number of interventions and can only start in a year or so. “The Flemish citizen and car owner will be misled, leading to even more confusion and disappointment.”

 

 

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