The National Car Testing Service (NCTS) began a phased reopening of the NCT service today (Monday, 8 June) starting with 15 of the 47 centres. These are: Cork – Little Island / & Blarney; Dublin – Northpoint 1 & 2,/ Deansgrange,/ & Fonthill; Galway; Limerick; Waterford; Letterkenny; Athlone; Ballina; Naas; Drogheda; and Derrybeg (Donegal).
In the short term the roadworthiness testing of vehicles will be on a limited basis and restricted only to those vehicles that had a test due date prior to 28 March 2020 (before the 4-month extension to vehicle certificates of roadworthiness came into effect). This will include vehicle owners who were unable to secure a retest date because of the suspension of the service and those affected by the vehicle lifts issue.
Those who fall into these categories can book an appointment for a test on the NCT website www.ncts.ie in any of the 15 centres that re-opened on 8th June. The re-opening of the other 32 test centres on a phased basis will be announced in the coming weeks and updates will be posted on ncts.ie In the interest of public information, they should also be advertised as they reopen in local papers and in the trade press.
The reason for the phased reopening appears to be ongoing issues with lifts. The RSA says that all centres reopening on the 8th June have functioning lifts. During the suspension of service, NCTS has made some progress in repairing and replacing the vehicle inspection lifts in test centres and this will continue in the coming weeks. It expect that all centres will have functioning lifts by the middle of July such that all tests can be completed in full. By way of clarity no further vehicles presenting for a full test will pass through the NCT without completing all stages of the test.
It adds that to enable the re-opening of centres the NCTS has put detailed measures in place, in each test centre, to mitigate against the spread of COVID19 and to protect both customers and staff. These measures include, the need to make an appointment (you will not be seen without an appointment), customers are required to prepay their tests when booking online for preauthorisation purposes, the transaction can be completed using the card in the test centre. No cash will be accepted in the centres.
Social distancing controls will be in place including notices posted both internally and externally around the test centre and physical distancing floor markers. The safety of the public is paramount, and we continue to be guided by public health officials and relevant national experts. If information or guidance changes, we will reassess and change our procedures and protocols accordingly.
According to the RSA, all NCT staff have received mandatory training on COVID 19 safety and hygiene protocols covering social distancing requirements, personal hygiene, and the correct use of PPE equipment.
Any customers who qualified for the 4 month extension to the period of validity of their NCT roadworthiness certificate are encouraged to log onto www.ncts.ie where they can check their new test due date.