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Vehicle Inspection Scheme Information Sheet

  1. General Information
    a. Which of my vehicles are subject to the Vehicle Inspection Scheme
     
  2. Types Of Vehicle Inspections
    a. What is the Defective Vehicle Call-In Scheme?
    b. What is the Random Inspection Call-In Scheme?
    c. What is the Regular Inspection Scheme?
    d. How do I lodge a complaint about an unroadworthy vehicle?
     
  3. Inspection Process
    a. How will I know if my vehicle needs to be inspected under the Vehicle Inspection Scheme?
    b. Do I have to present my vehicle for inspection if I receive a call-in notice?
    c. Who carries out the inspections under the Vehicle Inspection Scheme?
    d. What are the types of Defect Notices?
    e. What happens if my vehicle does not pass an inspection as a result of a Defect Notice?
    f. What happens if my vehicle is issued with a Defect Notice requiring a full roadworthiness inspection?
    g. What happens if my vehicle does not pass a Regular (scheduled) Inspection?
     
  4. Fees
    a. Do I have to pay an inspection fee?
    b. How do I pay the inspection fee?
     
  5. Further Information

Vehicle Inspection Scheme Information Sheet, (PDF)

 

1. General Information

The Department of Infrastructure Energy and Resources (DIER) has a responsibility to ensure vehicles using the State's roads are maintained in a safe condition and are suitable for their proposed purpose. In addition to normal on road inspections conducted by Transport Inspectors and Police Officers, DIER also administers a formal vehicle inspection scheme.

a. Which of my vehicles are subject to the Vehicle Inspection Scheme?

Any motor vehicle or trailer may be subject to inspections under the vehicle inspection scheme. The Registrar of Motor Vehicles can request you to present your vehicle for inspection at a place and time nominated by the Registrar. This authority to request you to present your vehicle may be exercised:

  • where the Registrar reasonably suspects that a vehicle is defective (Defective Vehicle Call-In Scheme);
  • as part of a Random Inspection Call-In Scheme; or
  • as part of a regular (scheduled) inspection scheme.

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2. Types Of Vehicle Inspections

a. What is the Defective Vehicle Call-In Scheme?

You will be required to present your vehicle for inspection under the Defective Vehicle Call-In Scheme if it is suspected that:

  • your vehicle is unfit for safe use;
  • there is a defect in your vehicle;
  • your vehicle does not comply with the requirements of the Vehicle and Traffic Act 1999 and associated regulations; or
  • the registration or the transfer of registration of your vehicle was obtained by mistake, false statement, or misrepresentation.

A vehicle is usually called-in under the Defective Vehicle Call-In Scheme following observation by an enforcement officer at a time the vehicle cannot be intercepted, or as a result of a complaint from the public.

b. What is the Random Inspection Call-In Scheme?

Legislation allows the Registrar of Motor Vehicles to call-in any vehicle as part of a Random Inspection Call-In Scheme. The purpose of the scheme is to allow the Registrar to ascertain whether a vehicle complies with any legislation relating to its construction or condition.

This program enables the Registrar to select a sample of particular vehicle types or classes to be presented for inspection at an Approved Inspection Station (AIS). The intention is that a selection of vehicles will be made on a monthly basis to be called in for inspection the following month. Selection may be based on a range of criteria including, for example:

  • type and age (eg prime mover more than 15 years old, truck 10t GVM more than 10 years old);
  • class of vehicle (eg crane, concrete agitator, jinker); or
  • region (eg prime mover based in particular post code areas).

Vehicles normally exempt from the Random Inspection Call-In Scheme are:

  • public passenger vehicles (including taxis and luxury hire cars);
  • hire and drive vehicles;
  • vehicles enrolled in alternative compliance arrangements;
  • vehicles that have been called-in during the previous two years;
  • vehicles that were re-registered after being unregistered for three months or more (and hence were inspected as part of the re-registration process).

c. What is the Regular Inspection Scheme?

Certain classes of vehicles are to be inspected on a regular or scheduled basis, either annually or twice yearly. These are vehicles that are used to either carry passengers for reward such as school buses and taxis, or hired out as rent-a-cars. The table below shows the classes of vehicles and the frequency of inspection that applies to them.

Vehicle Class

Frequency

Public Passenger Vehicle (10 or more seats, including the driver's seat)

6 monthly

Public Passenger Vehicle (less than 10 seats, including the driver's seat)

12 monthly

Public Passenger Vehicle licensed as a Taxi

6 monthly

Public Passenger Vehicle licensed as a Luxury Hire Car

6 monthly

Hire and Drive Vehicle (13 or more seats, including the driver's seat)

6 monthly

Hire and Drive Vehicle (less than 13 seats, including the driver's seat, and more than 3 years old)

12 monthly

Hire and Drive Vehicle (less than 13 seats, including the driver's seat, and more than 15 years old)

6 monthly


Vehicles subject to regular inspection have the details of their inspection history recorded on the DIER Motor Registry.  In some instances, public passenger vehicles may be inspected more frequently than those intervals above if the Registrar of Motor Vehicles has reason to believe the vehicle is not being maintained in a roadworthy condition.

In addition, a relaxing of the inspection interval for buses from 6 to 12 months may be approved by the Registrar if the operator has an excellent inspection record.  This approval is obtained upon application to DIER by the bus operator.

d. How do I lodge a complaint about an unroadworthy vehicle?

If you wish to lodge a complaint about an unroadworthy vehicle, you should contact the Vehicle Operations Branch, DIER on telephone (03) 6233 5331.

When you make a complaint, you must provide:

  • your name and address;
  • your date of birth;
  • the registration number of the defective vehicle;
    what is defective about the vehicle (eg headlight not working, rust in the body of the vehicle); and
  • the date and street on which the vehicle was being driven.

Your identity will be treated as confidential information. As a general rule, anonymous complaints will not be acted upon.

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3. Inspection Process

a. How will I know if my vehicle needs to be inspected under the Vehicle Inspection Scheme?

If your vehicle is selected for a unscheduled call-in inspection, you will be sent a notice providing details of the inspection requirements. You will normally be allowed 28 days in which to have your vehicle inspected and the report forwarded to DIER.

DIER does not issue inspection reminders to operators of vehicles that are operating under a regular (scheduled) inspection program.

Vehicles under the regular inspection program are required to display a current inspection label during the inspection period. This label clearly indicates the month and year the next inspection is due, and is issued by the inspecting person.

b. Do I have to present my vehicle for inspection if I receive a call-in notice?

Yes, the regulations provide for substantial penalties for failing to produce a vehicle for inspection within the specified time. The Registrar may also suspend or cancel a vehicle's registration if it is not presented.

In the case of vehicles subject to regular inspections, penalties apply if the vehicle is used without it having undergone its' required inspection.

If you feel that the repairs required following an inspection may not be economically justified, you may choose instead to cancel the vehicle's registration and return the number plates to the nearest Service Tasmania shop. You may choose to do this either before or after the inspection is carried out. A refund of fees will be arranged (if applicable).

If you choose to cancel the vehicle's registration before having the inspection carried out you must advise the Vehicle Operations Branch of DIER, on telephone (03) 6233 5331 or facsimile (03) 6233 5210.

c. Who carries out the inspections under the Vehicle Inspection Scheme?

All inspections are carried out by Approved Inspection Stations.

Click on the link below for a listing of AIS: www.transport.tas.gov.au/standards

d. What are the types of Defect Notices?

If you are issued with a minor vehicle defect notice by a Police Officer or a Transport Inspector:

  • you will be required to carry out repairs within a specified time, which may vary from 1 to 28 days. The time allowed for repairs will depend on the seriousness of the faults.
  • you may continue to use your vehicle, however, some limits may be imposed (such as "to be driven in daylight hours only" in the case of lighting defects).

A major vehicle defect notice is affixed to your vehicle when the defects are sufficiently serious to render the vehicle unfit for safe use. Unfit for safe use may mean that it is:

  • unsafe for the driver and passengers (eg brakes, seatbelt faults, severe rust); or
  • unsafe for other people (eg severe body damage that could cause injury to a pedestrian).

A major vehicle defect notice can:

  • allow a vehicle to be driven to a place of repair; or
  • specify that a vehicle must not be driven from the place of inspection. In such cases a trailer or tow truck would be required to move the vehicle to a place of repair.

Once the repairs nominated in a minor or major vehicle defect notice have been carried out, you must present your vehicle to an AIS for a notice clearance inspection.  Some minor vehicle defect notices are able to be cleared by a declaration from the owner that the defects have been rectified (receipts for repairs or purchase of parts may need to be attached to the declaration).

If you decide that the nominated repairs are not economically viable, you may opt to cancel the vehicle's registration (see section 3b).

It should be noted that the Registrar may suspend or cancel the registration of your vehicle if a minor or major vehicle defect notice is not cleared within the required time.

e. What happens if my vehicle does not pass an inspection as a result of a Defect Notice?

The vehicle examiner is not to clear any defect notices until all defects have been rectified.  This will result in the vehicle having to be re-inspected by the vehicle examiner in order to clear the notice and allow the vehicle to be used.

f. What happens if my vehicle is issued with a Defect Notice requiring a full roadworthiness inspection?

Occasionally, an on-road inspection by a Police Officer or a Transport Inspector will require a full roadworthiness inspection to be conducted as part of the Defect Notice issued to the vehicle.  The vehicle must be presented to an AIS for a full inspection.

The vehicle examiner will complete a General Inspection Report listing any defects identified.  This is attached to the Notice.  The Notice will not be cleared by the examiner until all defects identified have been rectified.

g. What happens if my vehicle does not pass a Regular (scheduled) Inspection?

Vehicles presented to a designated AIS for a scheduled inspection will fail the inspection if any non-conformance defects are identified by the vehicle examiner.

A "non-conformance" defect is one that mainly is a minor defect and the vehicle can continue to be used as a Public Passenger Vehicle.

A "non-conformance Critical" defect is a major defect and is seen as a safety risk.  In this instance the PPV inspection label is removed by the vehicle examiner and using the vehicle as a PPV is an offence.  The examiner will forward a copy of the Inspection Report to DIER and the defect is immediately placed on the vehicle registration record at DIER.

In both these instances, the vehicle must be brought back to the AIS for re-inspection and passed for its' scheduled inspection.

Although vehicles subject to regular inspections have an inspection review date on their registration record, administratively the vehicle is regarded as requiring inspection within the month of inspection as recorded. For example, a vehicle with a scheduled inspection review date during May must have passed inspection prior to 1 June. It is an offence to operate the vehicle outside its inspection period.

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4. Fees

a. Do I have to pay an inspection fee?

The registered operators of vehicles that are inspected at an AIS as part of the vehicle inspection scheme, or for a pre-registration inspection, are required to pay a fee for the inspection. The current inspection fees for classes of vehicles are shown at the attached link: www.transport.tas.gov.au/fees

NOTE

that a further inspection fee is payable to the AIS if a vehicle is required to be re-presented for clearance of defects. These fees are inclusive of GST.

b. How do I pay the inspection fee?

Fees for inspections carried out at an Approved Inspection Station (AIS) should be paid to the AIS.  Some AIS may require the fee to be paid at the time of inspection.  Others may send an invoice to the operator.

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5. Further Information

All enquiries relating to inspection matters should be directed to the AIS Compliance Officer, Vehicle Operations Branch of DIER, on telephone (03) 6233 5403 or facsimile (03) 6233 5210.

This paper is one in a series of Information Sheets that provide further detail on a range of passenger transport matters. This information can be accessed from the Department of Infrastructure, Energy and Resources' public website at  http://www.transport.tas.gov.au/operator_information

Copies of the Information Sheets are available from Service Tasmania shops or by contacting the Department of Infrastructure, Energy and Resources' Telephone Enquiry Service on 1300 851 225.

Other Information Sheets available are:

More detailed information on the legislation relevant to vehicle inspections (listed below) can be found on the legislation website www.thelaw.tas.gov.au or you can obtain a copy from the Printing Authority of Tasmania Bookshop at 123 Collins Street, Hobart - telephone (03) 6233 3289 or email bookshop@pat.tas.gov.au

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