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Why do almost half of motorists drive with vehicle faults?

By Kyle Linsay
Thursday, January 22, 2015 - 11:00

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Does lack of confidence affect your automobile?

IMI believes lack of confidence in garage professionals partly to blame

Brake and Direct Line have today released data on drivers attitudes when it comes to vehicle safety checks and basic maintenance. Almost half of respondents admitted to driving with at least one risky vehicle problem or defect and the IMI, who are campaigning for the licensing of the retail motor trade, believes fears of being over-charged or given poor service by garages are probably contributing to motorists’ attitude

Over a quarter (26%) of motorists surveyed by the IMI last year said that they wouldn’t feel confident challenging a bill because of technical jargon used and 1 in 10 said they don’t like visiting a garage because they feel they are not treated with respect.

Steve Nash, CEO of the IMI, believes the latest research from Brake and Direct Line simply underlines consumer fears about the service they will receive in garages: “Clearly there is a serious safety risk if motorists are not taking heed of vehicle faults and don’t feel comfortable going to a garage for maintenance and repairs.”

“Our research suggests that the majority of motorists choose a garage or mechanic without sufficient information to verify their competence to do the job. The proliferation of hybrid vehicles and complex driver assist systems has already increased the skills requirements for effective and safe working on modern vehicles. But currently there is no industry-wide license in place to ensure service technicians are properly qualified.”

The IMI is calling on all the major political parties to include a mandatory License to Practice for the motor trade in their election manifestoes in 2015.

IMI research also shows that 90% of businesses in the sector are in favour of licensing to protect them from being undercut by rogue traders. The IMI is seeking meetings with the leaders of all the main political parties ahead of the General Election to put the case for licensing. It will publish the results of these consultations and advise its 500,000 members and associates in the sector, of appropriate voting choices, accordingly.

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