What You Should Know About Vehicle Safety Inspections in Australia

Unlike the British MOT, vehicles in Australia do not require regular roadworthy check. The rules, however, vary from one state to another, with the requirement of a safety certificate being compulsory only for the following conditions –

> During the sale of the car ( more on that here);
> When the car exceeds specific age; and
> The car is repairable but is written off.

So, what are the requirements of safety certificates?

Safety Certificate Requirements 

Although exact safety certificate requirements vary from one state to another, there are some common factors. The basic requirements needed during vehicle inspection are given below –

> Seats
> Seat belts
> Windscreen
> Brakes
> Steering
> Tyres
> Damage or rusted body
> Emission and exhaust controls

The transport department of the state grants permission to workshops and garages to carry out vehicle inspection. Only such garages, which are approved by the department, can inspect the vehicles. Here is a list of some of the states that have a list of the approved workshops/garages –

> Australian Capital Territory
> Northern Territory
> New South Wales
> South Australia
> Queensland
> Victoria
> Tasmania
> Western Australia

For the states of South Australia and Queensland, booking can be done through the state transport departments.

As mentioned above, each of the states and territories has a different requirement or specification that the owner of the vehicle has to comply with before the vehicle can be issued a safety certificate. Here are the requirements for each of the states –

• Australian Capital Territory – The car inspection is carried out and should have a certificate with one month validity in the following conditions –

> Registration from another state;
> A 6-year or older vehicle with ownership change;
> The registration expiry exceeds 1 year;
> Registration establishment; and
> Defect clearances.

LPG cars need annual inspection.

• Northern Territory – Vehicle age is 3 years or older; and it belongs to another state or needs registration renewal.

• New South Wales –

> Registration renewal,
> Belongs to a different state; and
> Age is five years or more.

• South Australia –

> Last registration is from different state and does not have interstate registration in same name;
> Age is 7 years or older;
> Written off vehicle that is repaired;
> Modified vehicle fitted with non-standard engine; converted to right hand drive, modified brakes, suspension systems or steering; and
> Defect notice

• Queensland- The certificate is needed if the car is to be sold. The safety certificate must be clearly seen on the vehicle when it is being sold. Private sellers need a certificate that has 200 km or 2-months validity from the issuance date. The certificate is valid only for one sale.

• Victoria – Like Queensland, the owner needs certificate valid for 1 month for sale of car or during re-registration. Car Inspection is needed if it is issued Defect notice or ‘unroadworthiness certificate’.

• Tasmania – If the vehicle remains unregistered for more than one quarter, then it needs to undergo vehicle inspection for safety. It is also applicable when it has been served defect notice; or when it is registered in another state or country. It also needs inspection before sale.

• Western Australia –

> Vehicle is modified;
> Initial registration;
> Receipt of Unroadworthiness notice;
> Annual examination

You may find that navigating the intricacies of safety standards difficult, for further reading, we recommend this article on LegalToday. Visit the website of the transport department of the states to know more about inspection guidelines.