Getting the show on the road: Is your vehicle post-lockdown ready?

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As we gradually move to more unlocking of restrictions, we will be seeing an increase in vehicle movement, whether that be for the school run, commuting and in the ever-important logistics sector.

The logistics sector has continued to operate throughout the restrictions in providing the essential supply chain for all goods and services that are our daily necessities.

Those operating vehicles in the passenger and logistics sector have to ensure that they are properly maintained at regular intervals, similarly for taxis and private hire vehicles which are closely monitored and regulated by the authorities.

But what about those cars, campervans and trailers that we all use on a regular basis for our social and work lives?

We should all use this time to carry out a motoring spring clean; don’t just ensure that your vehicle is in a state of roadworthiness.

Also, check your documentation to make sure that any MOT exemptions that were in place during lockdown have been adhered to and that you have carried out services at the intervals expected under your PCP or lease plans. You can check the status of your MOT on the Government website.

Mike Haywood, Partner, Woodfines – Road Transport, Crime & Regulatory.

It may be some time before we choose to take our cars on international journeys, but if that is under contemplation, ensure that you are checking the requirements of the country that you intend to travel to.

There may not be an influx of travel via our ferry network to the continent this summer, but taking time to plan ahead and ensure that those documents are in order will reduce the worry when the time comes. The latest information for Brexit and driving abroad can be found here.

As ever, routine maintenance checks of your car, motorbike or van should take place and the yearly MOT (if your vehicle requires one) is not a substitution for those regular checks that should be undertaken on items that do not require specialist mechanics.

Check your windscreen wipers, tyres, washer and coolant levels and make sure that your bulbs are operating correctly to ensure that you have taken steps as far as you can so that you and your car are as safe as possible on the road.

The Government committed extensions to the MOT testing regime, and in many cases, cars have stood still for significant periods of time as many people have been working from home and have been unable to go on longer journeys.

Whilst the mileage on your car may have significantly reduced, this does not mean that there has been no basic deterioration to your vehicle.

Whether your immediate plans are to travel locally or long distance, carry out that spring clean and hopefully reduce the risk of an unexpected breakdown, but also improve the overall performance and economy of your vehicle.

Mike Haywood, Partner, Woodfines
Road Transport, Crime & Regulatory

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