Drivers in a number of major cities are being urged to book their MOT early as testing centres face a jump in demand for appointments.
The Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), which oversees the testing process has revealed the 10 cities around the country expected to see the sharpest rise in demand over the coming month, with up to 22,000 additional tests due to be carried out in some locations.
Using its MOT records, the agency has identified Birmingham as the location facing the biggest “squeeze” on test centres.
An extra 22,555 tests are expected to be booked in the city in October, leaving drivers facing potential delays in getting an appointment.
Test centres in Peterborough and Sheffield are likely to be next busiest, with more than 16,000 additional appointments expected in both cities.
Leicester, Glasgow, Nottingham, Reading, Newcastle, Bristol and Cardiff completed the list of the 10 busiest cities, each with between 12,00 and 15,000 additional tests predicted.
The DVSA said that the MOT extension introduced during last year’s lockdown meant more cars now required their MOT in the autumn months. Previously the AA estimated that around 5.5 million vehicles had their MOTs deferred.
Whatever the reason, driving without a valid MOT carries a fine of up to £1,000, meaning drivers would be wise to make sure they are not caught out by demand.
The DVSA’s head of MOT policy, Chris Price, commented: “DVSA’s priority is to help everyone keep their vehicle safe to drive.
“While we’re sure everyone will be able get a test for their vehicle, slots will be harder to come by.
“If you want to use your usual garage and guarantee a slot before your expiry date, you should give them a call now and get it booked in.”
An MOT can be carried out up to one calendar month (minus a day) prior to the expiry date of the existing MOT certificate, while still preserving the anniversary of the expiry date. This means drivers can book in a bit early if needed.”