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Emissions value tampering on the manufacturers plate

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: Enforcement

Vehicles that are part of a well-managed and maintained fleet should have little difficulty passing the test. Indeed, many operators take pride in achieving a 100% pass rate. And any good operator should be happy that faults picked up on the test be corrected as quickly as possible.

But we’ve noticed that some operators aren’t like that.

Issues at test

DVSA Vehicle Standards Assessors have picked up on a small number of heavy vehicles being presented for annual test with some form of tampering carried out to the exhaust emissions data recorded on the vehicle manufacturer’s plate.

The MOT requires the exhaust emissions to be tested to the manufacturer’s type approval values. If this is not available, the vehicle could be tested to an incorrect standard. A recent recording exercise found that the practice is relatively uncommon. But it does impact government efforts to reduce emissions and could be an indicator of wider poor practice on the operator’s part.

Risks to you as an operator

To ensure that this is not an indication of wider poor practice, DVSA enforcement teams have followed up these tampering reports by either writing to the operator asking for an explanation or paying the operator a visit. Most cases have resulted in the operator getting a replacement plate, but some operators have been reported to the Traffic Commissioner for public inquiry consideration.

DVSA has also discussed the issue with vehicle manufacturers, and they have offered solutions to reinstate the data if it’s missing. So, if you have discovered you have an issue, contact your local dealer to get the problem resolved, although they will charge for this. This is a much better option than getting a visit from your local DVSA enforcement examiner!

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  1. Comment by James Ditchburn posted on

    My garage noticed that the plate on my vehicle had been defaced. I can only think that this was done before I owned the vehicle and I just hadn’t noticed the defacing. Can the vehicle be emission tested using the stated levels on the vehicles V5C while I await receipt of a replacement plate from Italy which will take 12 weeks and has been ordered. Although a private horsebox, loss of use for nearly three months will cause some difficulties.

    • Replies to James Ditchburn>

      Comment by Josh (DVSA) posted on

      Hi James,

      Thank you for getting in touch.

      If the plate value on the vehicle is missing or has been tampered with, the current default value in the inspection manual will be used.

      It is not necessary to take your V5 for testing.

      Assessors will record the plate value from the vehicle during the annual (MOT) test so that it can be used for subsequent tests if the original plate is missing or defaced.

      Assessors are also instructed to report any defacing of an emissions plate to our enforcement team.

      You've taken the correct action in ordering a replacement plate for future annual tests, it would be worth taking confirmation of the order when you attend test to show the assessor.

      Kind regards.