Licensed vehicle testing
The hackney carriage and private hire drivers are able to licence or replace their current licensed taxi with a vehicle up to ten years old, subject to the vehicle passing it's initial mechanical and appearance inspection. For a vehicle to remain licensed after reaching ten years old it will be necessary for it to meet the Five Fault Rule Criteria outlined below.
In addition to the normal pass or fail situation, any vehicle, regardless of age, which fails any two consecutive periodic inspections with three or more MOT failure faults (as defined in the VOSA MOT Inspection Manual for Private Passenger & Light Commercial Vehicle Testing) will result in the vehicle having to undergo two interim tests per year. The policy is to be applied as follows.
- If a vehicle fails a first grant or a licence renewal inspection with three or more defined MOT faults and subsequently fails its interim inspection with three or more MOT faults, when the vehicle licence is next renewed, the vehicle will be subject to two interim tests during the period of the twelve-month licence. The vehicle owner will be required to pay the Licensing Service the requisite fee for the additional test before the licence is granted.
- If a vehicle fails an interim inspection with three or more MOT faults and subsequently fails the next renewal inspection with three or more MOT faults, the licence will be renewed subject to two interim tests during the period of the twelve-month licence. The vehicle owner will be required to pay the Licensing Service the requisite fee for the additional test before the licence is granted.
Five Fault Rule Criteria - the definition of a fault for the '5 fault Rule' testing purposes
1. MOT items
Any individual fault which would cause the vehicle to fail the standard MOT test will count as one fault. For example, leaking brake cylinder plus a bald tyre is two faults.
Any combination of a number of faults within the interior of the vehicle (not including the dashboard instruments working correctly, for example, a broken speedometer) will count as one fault. For example, a torn passenger seat plus stained upholstery plus a hole in carpet will count as only one fault.
Damage to the vehicle paintwork regardless as to the number of areas concerned, will count as one fault. For example, damaged paintwork on four panels would count as one fault.
4. Bodywork damage and rust
Any number of dents or scratches or rusting which materially effects the appearance of the vehicle will count as one fault. For example, a damaged passenger door and a damaged and rusted near-side wing would count as one fault.
5. Excluded items
For the purpose of the '5 Fault Rule', the following items would require rectifying before a pass certificate was issued but would not be counted as faults (Nil faults).
- Light bulbs not working
- No fire extinguisher
- No fare card on display
- Absence of vehicle signage
- A missing licence plate
- No taxi meter fitted
- Taxi meter not accurate
- Taxi meter not operating correctly