Your correspondent in the June Issue, Mr. Thos. O. Adams of Glasgow, in criticising the so-called improved M.o.T. test, is doing a service, as few seem to have raised the points mentioned.
The further extension of mechanised testing envisaged in the next two years will increase the cost substantially without having any material effect on the accident rate.
I speak as one who has been in the motor vehicle repair trade for over forty five years and unwillingly benefits financially from the present test oppression, when a speck of dirt may, at the critical moment, obstruct a washer jet and cost the owner £4.10 failure certificate, instead of the common sense approach and the application of a little wire. As your correspondent points out, a weeping shock-absorber may not be inoperative, and if one watches the many cops and robbers chases on American TV films, it would appear that most of theirs are entirely inoperative. I have known a suspension ball joint failed, when the removal of one .003″ shims restored normal fit. Tyres damaged by neglected roads, which your £50 tax pays for, may cost you £50 if you attempt to drive home carefully. The alternative is to leave the vehicle to obtain help, returning to find a good one stolen, plus other useful objects.
The original simple test, with intelligent common sense application, was adequate for safety, but it appears that ministry representatives are horrified if the failure rate falls.
A normally well kept car may need £30 expenditure to-day to pass. In two years if we are not careful, this could well be £60 to £90.
Bristol MORGAN MARSHALL