Herald on WOF changes

January 29th, 2013 at 3:00 pm by David Farrar

The editorial:

The reaction of motor industry lobbyists suggests the Government’s changes to the warrant of fitness system are as radical as they are ill-considered. Far from it. The new rules are the least extreme of the options that were considered, and remain more stringent than those in many comparable countries. They also represent a reasonable balance between safety, the prime consideration, and cost savings. In sum, the Government has acted appropriately in responding to the great improvements in vehicle safety since six-monthly inspections were introduced in the 1930s.

It is a good point that the rules actually remain more stringent than most countries.

Change, however, is necessary. There is no reason New Zealand motorists should have to endure more frequent warrant of fitness checks than their counterparts overseas. Once, in the days of high import costs, this country’s car fleet was noticeably aged and, therefore, more prone to defects that could result in serious accidents. But two things have happened. First, our fleet now bears a far greater resemblance to those overseas in terms of age. Second, cars have become far more reliable. Frequent inspections are not a panacea. The number of accidents linked to vehicle faults here is the same as in other countries at about 2.5 per cent – or 0.5 per cent where they are the only cause. Liquor and speed are far greater factors.

This is the key point. Our problems are that NZ roads are generally pretty crappy and people driving too fast for the conditions. The accident rate due to car defects is extremely low.

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40 Responses to “Herald on WOF changes”

  1. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    30,000 NZers die every year of various causes.

    The bureaucrats and their cronies in the private sector make a feast of the extremely small percentage that die on the roads, and use massive propaganda campaigns to underpin their push for greater regulation and more “safety”.

    In reality we’re doing fine just as we are, and overseas studies show that we would probably continue to do so if both the bureaucrats and their private sector cronies were vapourised overnight.

    National’s changes were far too timid.

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  2. eszett (2,408 comments) says:

    In reality we’re doing fine just as we are, and overseas studies show that we would probably continue to do so if both the bureaucrats and their private sector cronies were vapourised overnight.

    Not sure what overseas studies you are referring to, but the local data suggest otherwise

    http://www.transport.govt.nz/research/Documents/Motor-Vehicle-Crashes-2010-International-comparisons-for-road-deaths.pdf

    We don’t look too flash compared with other countries.

    Of course if you look at total deaths the number is misleading.

    Looking at age groups and avoidable deaths would yield a different picture. Not to mention that road deaths are just the tip of an iceberg with serious injuries.

    Our problems are that NZ roads are generally pretty crappy and people driving too fast for the conditions. The accident rate due to car defects is extremely low.

    Agree. Although I am somewhat annoyed with the 1/1/2000 cut-off rule as my car was first registered in 1999.

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  3. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    The OP says this-

    “The number of accidents linked to vehicle faults here is the same as in other countries at about 2.5 per cent – or 0.5 per cent where they are the only cause.”

    Yet we have by far the most stringent inspection regime of all.

    Is the obvious logical conclusion too hard for you?

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  4. RRM (9,924 comments) says:

    the Government has acted appropriately in responding to the great improvements in vehicle safety since six-monthly inspections were introduced in the 1930s.

    So why was the year 2000 chosen as the cut-off date for annual WoFs, again? It sounds like 1970 might have been just as valid…?

    These reliable “modern” systems are not as new as the motor industry would like you to think they are. A lot of this stuff has been pretty standardised for a long time… as evidenced by the fact that I can walk into Ripco or Super Crap Auto and buy virtually all maintenance / consumable parts I need for my 42 year old car.

    And unlike a 2007 Honda Accord whose ultimate longevity we can only surmise, my old Triumph has a proven track record of being on the road for 42 years (much longer than I’ve been alive :-P ) …illustrating that, contrary to motor trade / Govt opinion, these older cars don’t necessarily fall apart at the first bump in the road!

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  5. jonno1 (82 comments) says:

    @eszett 4.00pm – tell me about it! My wife’s car was registered on 31/12/1999. That worked for me when the exhaust needed replacing (I didn’t have to replace the catalytic convertor) but not this time. I’ve tried to get her to replace her car several times over the last few years but she refuses: “Why? I like it”. Maybe this rule change will help – nah, guess who’s responsible for WoFs in our household? My own car has just passed the 6 year threshold so good for me (except the change doesn’t kick for another 18 months it seems).

    Actually, my wife’s refusal to replace her car reminds me of a trip I made to the UK a few years ago flying business class (at the client’s expense of course). I suggested that she come with me and we stay a week or two as tourists after my one-day meeting, and that she fly business class also (at my expense). “What’s the cost difference?” she asked. It was about $5-7k (can’t remember exactly now). “No, I’ll fly economy and take the money in cash for shopping” she said. And she did. Smart lady.

    So maybe I shouldn’t suggest replacing her car again…

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  6. eszett (2,408 comments) says:

    Is the obvious logical conclusion too hard for you?

    The current change is a logical conclusion.

    Not having any inspections at all, isn’t.

    So why was the year 2000 chosen as the cut-off date for annual WoFs, again? It sounds like 1970 might have been just as valid…?

    Strange indeed. I guess it’s an attempt to encourage NZ to have a younger fleet in general. But then a general rule of say 12 or 15 year old cars having 6 months inspections rather than an arbitrary cut-off date would have been better.

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  7. OTGO (551 comments) says:

    A great change that will benefit most motorists. Next should be raising the open road limit on dual lane carriageways to 120 kph. I’m not holding my breath though. Imagine the bleating from the highway patrollers union or speed ticket writers association or whatever.

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  8. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    1970 Triumph??

    Just the car for commies.

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  9. RRM (9,924 comments) says:

    Just the car for commies.

    :lol: LOL – is that the best you could come up with?

    Weak…

    What a sad negative little hater you are. It was probably people like you that resisted upsizing the 842cc Morris engine to a reckless one litre for so long. Can’t have the poor people enjoying themselves too much can we?

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  10. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    “Weak…”

    Maybe.

    Seems to have stung you well enough.

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  11. kerrni99 (3 comments) says:

    While I generally agree with what is, as usual, a good post, I don’t believe your assessment that New Zealand roads are generally pretty crappy has much basis in fact. I used to hold this belief myself, but my father, who did a lot of work on roads at The Treasury and subsequently, informed me otherwise. And having lived overseas for decades now and traveled extensively, I have to agree with his assessment. They are generally on par with most developed countries’ roads. If you want to use the label crappy, they are no crappier than most OECD countries.

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  12. Griff (7,717 comments) says:

    I would back my 97 Camry to last longer with no repairs just routine maintenance than any modern piece of euro trash
    even with its 200,000 km.
    It should have been 1 year for all.
    Just because your piece of over engineered computerized wiz bang is all shiny does not mean its going to be either reliable or safe.

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  13. muggins (3,760 comments) says:

    http://www.classiccar.co.nz/articles/priceon-warrant-of-fitness-264

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  14. muggins (3,760 comments) says:

    I go with that bloke at the AA. His name rings a bell.

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  15. eszett (2,408 comments) says:

    Just the car for commies.

    Wouldn’t that be a Lada?
    Or to be really exotic a Moskvich.

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  16. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    No wonder he doesn’t want the speed limit increased.

    He’s probably one of those losers you see trundling along at 75 kph at the head of a column of fifty constantly braking cars, and with clouds of piston slap smoke exhausting every time he touches the accelerator.

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  17. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    “I would back my 97 Camry”

    Massive carbon footprint, those old tired and probably clocked jap cars.

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  18. Griff (7,717 comments) says:

    And why does that matter? if you want pollution try my 2.5 liter 2/ merc that things kills whales at idle. Sucks 450 bucks worth of premium a day easy. Then their is my special favorite My Detroit nothing sounds like a 2/ diesel when you wind it right up.

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  19. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    The global warming kid rides again.

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  20. Steve (North Shore) (4,563 comments) says:

    A 97 Camry has a massive carbon footprint? (See Red catching a Taxi to the Airport to fly somewhere)
    Let go of your dick man.

    There are at least two people in the Camry Car Club and Griff is one

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  21. RRM (9,924 comments) says:

    He’s probably one of those losers you see trundling along at 75 kph at the head of a column of fifty constantly braking cars, and with clouds of piston slap smoke exhausting every time he touches the accelerator.

    Just to be clear, are we talking about me or Griff here?

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  22. Steve (North Shore) (4,563 comments) says:

    I think this WOF stuff is heading to owner responsiblity to have your vehicle checked and serviced, but the parameters are all wrong.
    Some new cars will do 5000KM per year, (Grannies, yeah they do drive the Subarus) some will do much much more – think sales reps. This is why I say it must be on distance traveled, as well as age

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  23. Griff (7,717 comments) says:

    You have to consider the whole of life cost of ownership.
    If you piece of euro trash sorry: when your piece of euro trash breaks down the cost in co2 of parts supply probably is more than a years worth of co2 from fuel for me. Camrys will go 350,000 400,000 kms + With the only parts other than normal maintenance being a set of steering rack ends. By that time some would have squandered the total carbon used to build two complete euro trash cars or more.

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  24. RRM (9,924 comments) says:

    That may be so, but… it’s still a Camry.

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  25. Steve (North Shore) (4,563 comments) says:

    I guess I am the other Camry owner RRM.
    You cant stick your Triumph (push to start) piece of pommy crap where the global warming sun don’t shine. Do they still bolt the diff to the floor on those shitters? I mean when the crownwheel and pinion shit themselves, the back windscreen shatters as well

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  26. Redbaiter (8,884 comments) says:

    If the useless prick (Grief) practiced what he so constantly preached he’d be riding shank’s pony. Just another rank watermelon hypocrite.

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  27. Steve (North Shore) (4,563 comments) says:

    Anyway back on topic:

    I am in the Marine trade, how will these changes effect the shitty rusty boat trailers?

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  28. questions (207 comments) says:

    “Redbaiter (1,933) Says:
    January 29th, 2013 at 5:42 pm
    “I would back my 97 Camry”

    Massive carbon footprint, those old tired and probably clocked jap cars.”

    Is it the slanty eyes that clocks them?

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  29. RRM (9,924 comments) says:

    Steve – Yes, you do need a sense of humour to drive English ;-)

    I have known the diffs to get quite noisy but I’ve never broken one…

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  30. Griff (7,717 comments) says:

    Joseph lucus prince of darkness :lol:
    2500 tc pi or s ?

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  31. nasska (11,510 comments) says:

    RRM

    One of the boxes on my bucket list awaiting a tick was against the entry for a Lotus 7. Available cash against asking price for such a vehicle sent me looking for a substitute. I found it last month in the form of an English sports car based on the Lotus design.

    It’s powered by a modified 1600cc crossflow Escort with a couple of carbs strapped to it & fair flies. Unfortunately it is still British as evidenced by the drum brakes & crap suspension. As for reliability…..I’m not over hopeful.

    But it’s fun. :)

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  32. Johnboy (16,554 comments) says:

    97 Camry’s!!……… Here was me thinking I was trading insults with rich pricks on KB :)

    Home James!!

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  33. krazykiwi (9,186 comments) says:

    Griff at 7:30pm

    You have to consider the whole of life cost of ownership.

    Griff advances two compelling reasons for purchasing a Trabant rather than an Aston Martin. Low price, and low carbon footprint.

    My advice is that you abandon cars and walk. Anything else is hypocritical.

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  34. labrator (1,850 comments) says:

    2500 tc pi or s ?

    Stag?

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  35. s.russell (1,642 comments) says:

    The Southland Times also has an excellent editorial on the subject.

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/opinion/8233036/Editorial-Fit-for-the-road

    Has hilarious descriptions of what vehicles used to be like in the 60s and why the 6-monthly warrant was such a good idea then but not now.

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  36. Johnboy (16,554 comments) says:

    Written by an idiot poseur s.russell.

    “Steering was one of the bigger problems; it was not unusual to be able to move the steering wheel a full quarter-turn before the worn-down teeth in the rack-and-pinion steering box picked up the slack. ”

    They never had rack and pinion in those days.

    Worm and nut, or recirculating ball perhaps? :)

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  37. Griff (7,717 comments) says:

    Just for red here is a real 2/
    http://youtu.be/m48vyc5beNg
    Eats gay super cars for a light snack …..eh……

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  38. cubit (356 comments) says:

    The reql concern is the very large numbers of unwarranted and unregistered (and dare I say it perpetually unsafe cars) that are on our roads. They are ticketed, but the people who drive such vehicles just don’t bother to pay and carry on regardless. Rules, regulation and laws are only observed by those who care. The ferals of this nation just don’t care about any of that stuff, and wofs are real low on their lists of priorities. they have much more important issues to ignore or work around.

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  39. muggins (3,760 comments) says:

    I bought a new car in July 2010 and I have already clocked up 3012 k’s .

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  40. MikeMan (172 comments) says:

    Stag?

    Can’t be a Stag, it is still running. :)

    The V8 in those was less than reliable.

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