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November 01 2017
By Mel Holley

A former routeone editor, Mel has more than 30 years’ experience in road and rail transport journalism.

DVSA creates ATF task force

In a bid to deal with the growing problem of a shortfall of testers to supply Authorised Testing Facility (ATF) sites, the DVSA has set up a ‘task force’, DVSA’s Director of Operations (North), Peter Hearn, tells routeone.

It comes as the ATF Operators Association (ATFOA) issues a call to action for ATF operators to e-mail their MP and Transport Secretary Chris Grayling about the issue.

An ATFOA survey reveals an average shortfall of 17% available testers, with some ATFs experiencing a 50% shortfall. It has produced a national map showing its results.

Says that ATFOA: “ATF’s have gone through great expense to deliver their side of the bargain. The ATF scheme has saved DVSA millions of pounds in real estate and administrative expenses.

“The subsequent financial liabilities ATFs have inherited are significant. However, through no fault of their own, they are being penalised by the challenging environment presented to them.”

Says Mr Hearn: “We are aware of issues with ATF testing and have set up a task force to address concerns.

“Although, the national fleet size remains steady, demand for DVSA testers from ATFs has increased by 6% since last year.

“To help meet this we’ve offered exceptional overtime payments to testing staff and as a short-term measure, have actively redeployed staff from other parts of the country to meet as many ATF requests as possible.

“As a solution to this, we’re recruiting for more staff and have made offers to more than 50 successful applicants.  These new recruits started to join us last week and they will all be in place in January 2018.”

Find out more: View the map here

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