GOOD NEWS FROM EUROPE
23 December 2012 - Federation of European Motorcyclists' Associations
Yes, really. Member States exclude motorcycles from proposed legislation on periodic roadworthiness tests
During today’s Council morning session, EU transport ministers reached a general approach regarding the legislative proposal on periodic roadworthiness tests (RWT) for motor vehicles and their trailers. EU Member States have drafted significant changes to the Commission’s proposal, among which the exclusion of L-category vehicles (powered two and three-wheelers), and leave Member States free to impose custom rules by turning the regulation into a directive. This is a new success for motorcyclists’ associations, which now needs confirmation during the debate in the European Parliament.
While the proposal of the European Commission to further to increase the minimum testing intervals for vehicles and include all powered two-wheelers into periodic RWT regimes is currently being revised by the Transport Committee of the European Parliament, Transport Ministers of the European Union (Council) have expressed their discontent with the proposal, adopting this morning significant changes to the proposed text:
Official Council press release just announced: ''The Council agreed a general approach on a draft directive updating the common rules on periodic roadworthiness tests for motor vehicles. (…) (it) does not retain the Commission''s proposal to extend periodic tests to motorcycles and light trailers and to increase the minimum frequency of checks for older cars and light commercial vehicles from every two years to every year throughout the Union. Member states, though, are free to impose stricter rules.''
Member States also turned the proposed Regulation into a Directive, which will leave more leeway for the later implementation of the legal act into national law. Therefore, in line with motorcyclists’ associations‘ views, the Council does not see the necessity to force all Member States to include the powered two-wheelers into periodic RWT regimes. In opposition to the Commission, Member States propose to lower testing requirements for vehicles which are hardly used on public roads, such as historic or competition vehicles. The Commission originally proposed annual checks as a minimum requirement for all motor vehicles older than six years.
Now that Member States have clearly indicated that they will only approve the proposal if it is amended considerably, and motorcycles are excluded from the text, Parliament now needs to take an official position. Discussions in Transport Committee have started yesterday.
FEMA is happy to see that the campaigns of its national organisations asking for a “reality check approach”, especially in those countries where there is no RWT for motorcycles, are being successful. The Commission had argued that the inclusion of motorcycles into RWT along with the tightening of testing intervals would have significant positive safety impact, but has never been able to provide any supportive (and unbiased) evidence for such claims. The only obvious benefit from such text would be the financial gain of the leading companies in the vehicle testing business.
For December 2012
From Federation of European Motorcyclists' Associations
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