A report by a leading Australian university claims New Zealand's six-monthly warrant of fitness (WOF) checks are not cost effective, just days ahead of a decision on whether to switch to annual checks.
Researchers at Monash University in Melbourne compared the vehicle inspection regime in Victoria, where checks are compulsory when a vehicle is sold, with New Zealand, where a new WOF is required every six months once a vehicle is six years old.
They found that while six-monthly checks were likely to cause a reduction in the number of accidents caused by mechanical faults, the drop could not justify the costs of the additional checks, estimated to be $250 million a year.
"Despite these safety benefits estimated, the costs to the motorist of the six-monthly inspections over and above the annual inspections were estimated to be considerable.
"This means that the six-monthly inspections compared to annual inspections were not considered to be cost effective."
The study comes just ahead of a government decision on its review of New Zealand's vehicle licensing system, expected before Christmas.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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