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MTA Exhausted By Boy Racer Law

MTA Exhausted By Boy Racer Law

The Motor Trade Association (MTA) is concerned that the recently introduced Boy Racer Act (Unauthorised Street and Illegal Drag Racing Amendment Act) will create huge difficulties for its members when it comes to the issue of inspecting noisy exhausts during Warrant of Fitness Inspections.

An Infosheet document issued by LTSA to all Warrant of Fitness Inspection Agencies this week outlining the inspection requirements for modified exhaust systems states a reason for rejection is “the noise output is noticeably and significantly higher than should be expected for the vehicle” when compared with the vehicle’s original exhaust system.

The MTA believes that vehicle exhaust noise is primarily a policing issue and should not have been brought into the area of vehicle inspection in the way that it has.

“While the MTA accepts that the public has every right to be concerned over vehicle safety and excessive noise, we are worried that this issue is being dropped into the laps of our members to sort out - and with patently insufficient industry consultation,” said MTA’s CEO Stephen Matthews.

The first formal request for submissions from LTSA on the proposed exhaust inspection process was not made until Wednesday 16 April, with replies due Tuesday 22 April, an already short time made shorter given the Easter holidays – meant that MTA was unable to fully consult with members and prepare a substantial response. However, MTA did raise a number of concerns regarding the practical aspects of the inspection process, including the submission timeframe.

Mr Matthews believes that the political agenda to remove the problem of boy racers is not one that the motor industry is equipped to deal with, and nor should it be asked to as it primarily relates to how vehicles are operated.

“A matter which should be handled by police is largely being transferred to our industry, in a very rushed manner via very subjective guidelines to deal with the problem. What one inspector may consider to be a noisy vehicle, may not be considered excessive by a neighboring Warrant of Fitness Agent, who may pass a vehicle that has just failed.” he said.

The suggested test procedure provided by the LTSA is rudimentary and subject to variation across a wide range of elements including the vehicle, the test environment and the experience and hearing levels of the inspector.

The outcome of this new regime affects not only vehicle owners and inspectors, but manufacturers and suppliers as well. Under the new rules virtually any aftermarket exhaust system could be deemed to be non-compliant.

The MTA believes the subject of noisy exhaust inspections needs further investigation and consultation and will continue to work with all interested parties to achieve a consistent process which can be used by both police and the motor industry.

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