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Heavy vehicles needing an annual test for the first time

Heavy vehicles needing an annual test for the first time
Certain vehicles with heavy goods chassis will need to have had an annual test by 20 May 2019 to remain legal on Britain’s roads.
This is because some heavy goods vehicles lost their test exemption in May 2018 and came into the scope of test.
Vehicles must now pass an annual test before the next vehicle tax renewal is due.
Vehicles now needing a test certificate include:
• mobile cranes
• breakdown vehicles (not breakdown vans)
• tower wagons
• some mobile engineering plants
• some trailers designed for the production of asphalt
• road construction vehicles (not road rollers)
• electrically propelled motor vehicles first registered since 1 March 2015
• tractor units pulling exempt trailers
• certain motor tractors and heavy and light locomotives exempted under sections 185 and 186 (3) of the Road Traffic Act 1988, where these are based on an HGV chassis
They will then need a test every year after their first test

Guidance
Heavy goods vehicles: phased roll-out of annual tests from May 2018
When to get certain heavy vehicles tested if they stopped being exempt from testing on 20 May 2018, records to keep, and safety inspections that must be done.
Overview
Some heavy vehicles (based on a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) chassis) stopped being exempt from needing an annual test on 20 May 2018.
For some of these vehicles, you have up until the date your vehicle tax renewal is due to get it tested for the first time. This is known as the ‘phased approach’.
However, other vehicles need to have an annual test certificate from 20 May 2018.
Vehicles that stop being exempt
These categories of vehicles stopped being exempt from annual tests on 20 May 2018:
• mobile cranes
• breakdown vehicles
• engineering plant and plant, not being engineering plant, which is movable plant or equipment being a motor vehicle or trailer (not constructed primarily to carry a load) especially designed and constructed for the special purposes of engineering operations
• trailers being drying or mixing plant designed to produce asphalt or of bituminous or tarmacadam
• tower wagons
• road construction vehicles (but not road rollers and other specialised equipment not based on an HGV chassis)
• electrically propelled motor vehicles first registered since 1 March 2015
• tractor units pulling exempt trailers
• motor tractors and heavy and light locomotives exempted under sections 185 and 186 (3) of the Road Traffic Act 1988, where these are based on an HGV chassis
HGVs and trailers stopped being exempt from annual tests on 20 May 201
• on the Isle of Bute
• on Arran, Great Cumbrae, Islay, Mull, Tiree or North Uist, which are used on mainland Great Britain

Eligibility
The phased approach to annual test is only for vehicles that were:
• first registered before 20 May 2017
• exempt from annual tests before 20 May 2018
Vehicles that are not eligible
These types of vehicles cannot use the phased approach:
• motor vehicles to be used in international traffic
• mobile concrete batching plant (also known as ‘volumetric concrete mixers’)
• tractors with a design speed over 40km/h used for non-agricultural haulage beyond a radius of 15 miles from their operating base
• trailers of all types

These vehicles must have a valid annual test certificate from 20 May 2018

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How it works
The vehicle must pass an annual test before its next vehicle tax renewal is due.
Documents you need
You must have a record of the vehicle’s most recent safety inspection (not general maintenance) available for enforcement authorities to inspect. The record must include:
• the date of the safety inspection
• the outcome of the safety inspection

Safety inspection
The person carrying out the safety inspection must be:
• technically competent
• operationally aware of the safety standards that apply to the vehicle
The safety inspection must follow the guidance in the guide to maintaining roadworthiness.
Keeping the vehicle safe to drive
The vehicle must always be safe to drive (roadworthy) .
Enforcement action can be taken if the vehicle is not in a roadworthy condition.

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