DVSA sets out position on front axle ban for old tyres

DVSA 10 year tyre MoT fail

DVSA has outlined what its approach will be to the discovery of tyres that are over 10 years old and fitted to the front axle of a coach, bus, minibus or LGV after doing so becomes illegal. The change in law comes into force on 1 February 2021 under the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) (Amendment) Regulations 2020.

Discovery of such a tyre at annual test will result in a failure. A failure will also be recorded if a tyre captured by the change to the law does not display a date code. Should a tyre aged 10 years or older fitted to a front axle be discovered during roadside enforcement checks, an S-marked prohibition will be issued and a follow up investigation will be conducted.

The Agency plans to update the Guide to Maintaining Roadworthiness, Categorisation of Vehicle Defects and the MoT inspection manual before the new legislation comes into force.

Casings that were re-treaded 10 or more years ago will be subject to the same restrictions as first use tyres. They must display the date that re-treading was carried out.

The change to legislation will also apply to the rear axle of minibuses that are fitted with single wheels. The Department for Transport had originally proposed a total ban on the use of all tyres aged 10 years and over on coaches, buses and minibuses but revised its position after a public consultation.

DVSA has confirmed to routeone that an annual test failure will not be recorded for tyres that are 10 years old or more and found in any other position than those described above. However, a spokesperson notes that operators using tyres that fall into that age category on other axles are “expected to follow the guidance set out in the Guide to Maintaining Roadworthiness and to conduct a risk assessment for their continued use.”