PWD plans roadworthiness inspection process change

Traffic at Melcoffee in Port Vila

By Jonas Cullwick

The Public Works Department is planning changes to the process for the roadworthiness inspections its mechanics carry out on vehicles to certify them able for their owners to pay the road tax and use the public roads of the country.

Supervisor of the PWD roadworthiness team, Jean Juliano, says they plan to start implementing the plan starting on October 1, 2017 when the roadworthiness checks on vehicles for the 2018 road tax starts.

“To ensure there is not a huge number of vehicles coming for checks in the last minutes of the deadline for payment of the road tax on March 1, we plan to allocate days for specific types of vehicles to be taken in for inspection,” Juliano says.

Accordingly, starting on October 1 this year, the roadworthiness team will conduct checks on private vehicles on Mondays.

On Tuesdays, it will be public vehicles including taxis, buses, and public transport vehicles.

Wednesdays will be the day for commercial vehicles. Thursdays — heavy duty vehicles of private companies and on Fridays, rental or hire vehicles.

Juliano says bookings will still be mandatory for all vehicles needing the inspection for roadworthiness.

For this year, the road worthiness checks did not start until December 2016 and by March 31, the deadline for payment of the 2017 road tax, a huge number of vehicles had not yet been through the inspections by PWD causing the Council of Ministers to approve an extension to May 31.

Also, the PWD implemented a new system for checking vehicles this year including bookings but still there was a huge backlog of vehicles that, either had not undergone the checks, were in the defects list, or were certified but the owners had not paid the road tax when the second deadline was approaching.

PWD hopes that by getting people to start early taking vehicles in for checks in October this year and on the days specified for different vehicles this will prevent the last minute rush and there won’t be the need to extend the deadline like this year.

Jonas Cullwick, a former General Manager of VBTC is now a Senior Journalist with the Daily Post. Contact: jonas@dailypost.vu. Cell # 678 5460922

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