Judge vows to make example of MOT tester but stops short of jail sentence

Tester to pay £3,725 in costs and carry out unpaid work after continuing to issue passes despite broken equipment

A mechanic has narrowly avoided jail after being caught faking the results of 33 MOT certificates.

Phillip Wilson was exposed by DVSA inspectors while working at MTs MOT Centre in Waterlooville, Portsmouth.

Inspectors discovered that the roller-brake tester and decelerometer were broken and ordered Wilson to stop all testing until both were fixed.

DVSA order to stop testing ignored

Wilson ignored the warnings and continued to dupe customers into thinking their vehicles were road-worthy.

His actions forced the authorities to issue a safety warning to dozens of drivers across the area.

The case incited the fury of Judge Gary Burrell QC at Southampton Crown Court, who vowed to make an example of Wilson.

He said: “You were in a position of trust.

“You knew what you were doing.

“What you did in this case was to expose others to a risk of loss and a risk of injury.

“Utter contempt for the MOT system”

“You displayed utter contempt for the MOT system and its integrity.”

Prosecutor Lucy Conroy told the court when Wilson later admitted to inspectors “making up the values” and “taking cash to issue certificates by hand” to avoid them being electronically registered with the DVSA.

She added: “The public has a right to have trust and confidence in those we ensure the safety of our families and ourselves.

“Currently, we have 33 vehicles who may or may not have defective brakes.”

Wilson has since been sacked from his role at the garage and banned from his profession for five years.

Simon Moger, defending, said: “He was very, very foolish to have carried on doing what he was doing.”

Judge Burrell said the public’s confidence had been rocked and insisted he needed to make an example of Wilson to act as a ‘deterrent’ to others.

However, he stopped short of an immediate prison sentence, instead imposing a six-month jail term, suspended for two years.

He added: “This is not an easy decision because you are of good character, you are unlikely to re-offend and you have lost quite a lot – you’ve lost your job, you’ve lost the prospect of being an MOT certificate giver for at least five years, your family situation has broken down.

“So you have, I accept, lost quite a lot.

“I am just – but only just – persuaded that it would be appropriate to suspend the sentence.”

Wilson was ordered to pay £3,725 in costs and carry out 200 hours unpaid work.

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Schaeffler reveals latest LuK, INA and FAG references

New-to-range list features Ford and Volkswagen Audi Group models

LuK, INA and FAG all feature in the latest new-to-range bulletin published by original equipment (OE) manufacturer and supplier, Schaeffler.

Three new part numbers have been released – covering kits for LuK clutch, INA timing chain and FAG wheel bearings – to cater for various models and engine specifications.

The first focus is on a new LuK RepSet Pro, a complete one-box solution for hydraulic clutch systems, containing both a clutch kit and concentric slave cylinder (CSC) inside the box.

The new kit is fitted to Ford Galaxy, S-Max and Mondeo (2014-onwards) models with both 2.0 TDCi and 2.0 TDCi Bi-Turbo engines.

Schaeffler always recommends replacing the CSC or slave cylinder when installing a new clutch, to avoid consequential damage and complaints in the hydraulic system.

Switching to INA, there is a new complete timing chain kit repair solution for Volkswagen Audi Group applications fitted with 1.4 TSi and 1.6 (2008-2016) engines.

These include the Audi A1 and A3; SEAT Alhambra, Altea, Altea XL, Córdoba, Ibiza and Leon; ŠKODA Octavia II, Rapid and Yeti, as well as the VW Beetle, CC, Golf V/VI, Passat, Polo, Scirocco, Sharan, Tiguan and Touran.

A timing chain transfers the rotational movement of the crankshaft to the camshaft and operates under continuous stress which, over time, can lead to wear and the need to fit a replacement.

Each INA Timing Chain Kit contains all of the the necessary OE parts for a professional service, including chain, gears, phasers and gasket, providing the perfect answer for technicians.

Meanwhile, FAG announces the arrival of a new Generation 3 (Gen.3) wheel bearing kit, suitable for all Audi A4 models from MY2015.

Gen.3 wheel bearings are the very latest complete bolt-on ‘hub units’ with a twin flange, often featuring magnetic encoder rings and cabling for safety systems.

Inside the box, in addition to the bearing itself, are four mounting bolts and a hub bolt – again, providing technicians with everything needed for a quick, simple and accurate repair.

Schaeffler will be revealing more new-to-range developments over the coming months, demonstrating the manufacturer’s commitment to delivering OE solutions to the aftermarket which allow technicians to ‘fit and forget’.

For further information log in to REPXPERT here.

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TEXA portal makes vehicle coverage database available

Database now accessible to all, including non-TEXA customers

The portal allows the user to search the car, truck, bike, marine and OHW categories for a specific vehicle.

It also displays the cable lists for all environments.

There are regular updates to this system with extensive makes and models that are updated.

To access the free diagnostic coverage portal, sign up with your e-mail address and a password.

For further information about TEXA, click here.

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Ivor Searle quick customer service supports garage businesses

Ivor Searle has confirmed it supports garages with installation guides for all its OE-quality products

When it comes to sourcing a major unit, such as a remanufactured gearbox, engine or turbo, a supplier’s swift response can make all the difference in helping get a workshop‘s customer back on the road.

Be they a private motorist, fleet driver or a LCV user, fast turnaround reflects good service and helps workshops to secure repeat business and referrals.

With this in mind, Ivor Searle holds comprehensive stocks to ensure first class customer service and minimum vehicle downtime and provides free next day UK mainland delivery on stock items ordered before 3.30pm.

Ivor Searle employs a team of 11 sales staff who handle around 400 telephone enquiries per day.

The company handled almost 4,500 customer enquiries in January alone.

An Ivor Searle spokesperson said: “Our expert sales team supports motor factors and workshops throughout Scotland and the rest of the UK, plus a growing number of customers in mainland Europe and Scandinavia.

“Despite consumer uncertainty about buying new diesel cars, demand for remanufactured diesel engines remains strong with diesels representing the bulk of the enquiries we receive and 74 per cent of the engines we sell.

“We have also seen a modest growth in demand for smaller-capacity petrol engines, reflecting the increased use of these compact, high-revving units that are designed to be ultra efficient.”

All Ivor Searle engines, cylinder heads and gearboxes are covered by a transferable 12-month unlimited mileage parts and labour warranty, while a two-year warranty covers all turbochargers.

All products are also supplied with pre-installation guidelines for the workshop and model-specific instructions where required.

In addition, all Ivor Searle professionally cleaned DPFs are provided with an inspection report and carry a no quibble 12-month unlimited mileage warranty.

For further information about Ivor Searle, click here.

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Eighteen per cent of motorists admit to driving car in need of repair

Most commonly ignored issues include faulty brakes, suspension and steering

Millions of motorists could be risking the safety of themselves and other road users because they are failing to get their vehicle repaired, a new report has said.

Research suggests 18 per cent of motorists continue driving their car despite knowing it needs repairs, citing financial constraints as a key influence in the decision.

Younger people are drastically more likely to risk driving damaged cars, with 38 per cent of 25- to 34-year-olds admitting to driving a car in need of repair, compared with just seven per cent of over 55s.

The most commonly ignored issues in the poll of 2,000 motorists included faulty brakes, suspension, steering, exhausts and damaged windscreens.

Meanwhile, 39 per cent of those who said their car was damaged said it was the body work that needed repairing.

The average time respondents had been driving their cars with damage was ten months, with the average quote for the work coming in at more than £1,800.

Bob Masters of Halfords Autocentres, who commissioned the study, said: “There’s no doubt that the rising cost of living is squeezing household budgets, forcing people to make difficult choices on how they spend their money, but motorists who avoid repairing safety critical items such as brakes, steering and suspension could be putting themselves and others in danger.”

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Five reasons Land Rover specialists choose BGA

BG Automotive explains why its steering and suspension range is so popular with Land Rover specialists

Largest range

BG Automotive supply by far the largest aftermarket range of Land Rover steering and suspension parts and components.

Built to last

Engineered in the United Kingdom and tested vigorously to outperform the OE equivalent.

Quality management

Adhering to strict ISO TS16949, ISO9001-2, ISO14001 quality standards, BG Automotive has a range of specialised equipment for in house measuring and testing.

Heritage

Part of 4BG Group, celebrating 90 years of manufacturing OE plastics, engine parts, mouldings and bespoke sealing products.

Trust

Founded in 1986, BGA Acquired HRA Ltd, a primary global S&S manufacturer, giving BGA vast experience in that sector for the supply of quality components to the international motor industry.

For further information about BG Automotive, click here.

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Autotech Recruit appoints new business development director

Latest appointment to drive strategy and forge new partnerships within the aftermarket for recruitment firm

With increasing demand for its services, and a growing reputation within the automotive industry for its innovative approach to creating recruitment solutions, Autotech Recruit has strengthened its management team with the appointment of Simon King.

A renowned figure within the automotive industry, Simon has joined Autotech Recruit as business development director in a bid to drive strategy and forge new partnerships within the aftermarket and with OEMs for the dynamic recruitment company, which continues to grow at a fast pace.

Having spent almost two decades with Kwik-Fit, within operations and business development positions, Simon brings a wealth of industry knowledge to his new role.

Retaining the largest network of automotive contractors in the UK, supplying many of the car dealerships, national retail groups, independent garages and government organisations across the country, Autotech Recruit has launched several training and apprentice initiatives in a bid to reduce the ongoing recruitment and skills shortage within the industry.

With demand for the company’s services increasing, managing director, Gavin White, explains how Simon will help steer Autotech Recruit as it continues to grow: “Our ‘inch-wide, mile-deep’ approach has enabled us
to fully entrench ourselves within the automotive industry and we work with a wide range of businesses and governing bodies.

“This allows us to fully understand the needs of the industry and, while our overriding objective is to keep workshops running and supply the industry with skilled vehicle technicians and MOT testers, create fresh recruitment and training initiatives to reduce the skills gap.

“We are delighted to have Simon on board as not only does he have the knowledge and industry connections to help drive our strategy forward, but his experience will help shape our processes to ensure we continue to
deliver innovative, quality solutions.”

On his appointment Simon King comments: “I have known Gavin and the team at Autotech Recruit for many years, in fact, while at Kwik-Fit, I was their biggest client.

“The team are unsurpassed in their ability to listen to the industry and create solutions to counteract recruitment challenges.

“For a small company, they have made a significant impact within large national automotive companies, and I am looking forward to helping them grow in the future.”

In addition to Simon’s post, Autotech Recruit has created two further business development positions.

Alistair MacDonald has joined the company to manage the aftermarket, while James Mackay is set to manage OEM partnerships.

This follows the appointment, at the end of last year, of recruitment industry expert, Graham Palfery-Smith as a non-executive director.

For further information about Autotech Recruit, click here.

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Ring’s finance director wins ‘Yorkshire Deal of the Year’

Yorkshire Finance Leaders Awards ceremony took place at the Queens Hotel in Leeds on 19th September

The awards recognise and celebrate exceptional financial leadership in the Yorkshire region from the past 12 months, with nine categories highlighting the best talent across a range of businesses and organisations.

Theresa, who was appointed as finance director at Ring in 2016, was shortlisted for her work on the recent acquisition of Ring by Osram, which was completed in May 2019.

Taking a central role in the deal, which began in 2017 and included gaining approval from the CMA, plus the integration work that has been carried out since the deal was completed, Theresa was a strong contender against
other leading professionals from the sector.

With the acquisition of Ring, Osram is strengthening its aftermarket business and offering customers access to a broader, complementary product range.

Both companies see the agreement as an opportunity for a successful
European cooperation.

Theresa has been integral in bringing the deal to a successful conclusion, ensuring that both companies can continue to grow and thrive in the UK, Europe and beyond.

Spencer comments: “The challenge posed by the Osram acquisition of Ring has been an exciting opportunity to develop my skills as both a Financial Director but also as a commercial and strategic leader.

“The successful completion of the deal and subsequent integration opens up new markets for Ring, as well as new product areas for Osram.

“I’m proud to have been involved in building a company that has proven valuable to a large multinational with a long and successful history.”

Spencer has worked across the UK with previous positions in Sheffield, Cambridge, London and Doncaster, allowing her to develop her financial skills and commercial acumen, both of which she believes are important for
those in financial leadership roles.

Theresa continues: “Both a changing business culture and an uncertain economic and political landscape have changed the role of the Finance Director over the past five years.

“Risk management is a critical part of the FD role and trying to prepare your business for a variety of high impact scenarios that are highly speculative is difficult, time consuming and potentially costly.

“In my experience, there has been a shift towards financial leaders playing a more commercial and strategic business role.

“An FD who has empathy for the trading side of a business can offer a unique perspective on strategic direction and investment opportunities.

“I feel there is increasing headroom for well-rounded financial
directors, especially those with strong levels of emotional intelligence, to play a part in business leadership.”

For further information about Ring, click here.

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Garage owner vows to carry on despite arson attack

Newly opened workshop faces big clean up, increased insurance costs and damaged reputation, owner fears

A Roxburghshire garage owner whose workshop was targeted by arson attack has vowed to carry on despite the feared cost to his business and reputation, according to the Southern Reporter.

Rhys Jackson says he was “raging” to find three burnt-out vehicles outside his garage on Tuesday morning.

Flames had engulfed two vans and a Renault Clio car at around 4am.

One of the vans was due to be scrapped, the second was being used for parts, but the car was a gift for his partner, Carley Bennet.

Rhys said: “I’d spent a bit of money on getting the car going right and now it’s completely gone.

“It’s all and well claiming on my insurance, but that just makes it dearer next year.

“It’s the mess that was left for me to clear up”

“And it not just that – it’s the mess that was left for me to clear up.

“It looked awful.

“How many customers am I going to lose now with not being able to safely leave their cars outside my garage?”

Rhys opened his MOT preparation, servicing and general repairs business 18 months ago.

He add: “It’s hard enough to get trade as it is as a 25-year-old.

“I took a big gamble when I came in here.If that had been a customer’s car, I would have shut the doors and walked away.

“It would have ruined me.”

A police spokeswoman said: “Police were called to a report of a man causing a disturbance in Edinburgh Road.

“The man was taken to hospital for assessment.

“Inquiries are continuing.”

Auto Torque has partnered with Garage Wire to bring you all the latest aftermarket news.

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Cheltenham trade show debut a major success, The Parts Alliance reports

Trade event heads to Cheltenham Racecourse for first time

The Parts Alliance has heralded its third trade show of 2019 as a major success, providing the perfect environment to bring all of its Cheltenham customers together with suppliers to socialise and network.

Attended by representatives from branches and suppliers, the Parts Alliance’s trade shows have become well-known throughout the industry for the lively and informative seminars and technical content, such as those on offer during the Cheltenham event from MANN-FILTER, Yuasa and Comma.

Held on 5th September, there were exclusive show offers and prizes to be won, with complimentary food and drink served as special guests Fuzz Townshend, Matt Neal and Daniel Rowbottom mingled with the crowd.

All that guests had to do to be in with a chance of winning was get a card stamped as they made their way around all of the suppliers in attendance.

Show prizes

Fuzz and Matt announced the winners and presented the prizes during a prize draw at the end of the show.

Among the prizes was £2,495 worth of EAE workshop equipment which included an EE-488OID tyre changer and EE-3096AV2 wheel balancer with free next-day delivery for winner Danny Martin of Auto Boss in Swindon.

Danny said: “We came to see the suppliers, and what we’ve learnt just by talking to all the different manufacturers here made it a real worthwhile night and then, my name was pulled out of the hat for this amazing prize – you can’t top that.

“The new kit from EAE will replace our tired old machines, so we can’t wait to get this new equipment installed and start earning some money from it.

“It’s great because the EAE colours match our colours, so it will look really smart in our workshop.”

“Loads of cool stuff here”

Other visitors to the show were only too happy to heap praise on the trade event too, with Kristian Ducros of Elite Vehicle Services in Swindon commenting: “I’ve got quite a close relationship with my local GSF and they invited me along to have a look around.

“There’s loads of cool stuff here, I’ve got to be careful not to spend too much money.

“The thing is, the automotive industry is changing all the time: I was just in the MANN FILTER presentation and they’re talking about how vehicle manufacturers are trying to harness brake dust now, so it just shows how everything is evolving.

“You’ve got to have your finger on the pulse to keep up with it all, it’s a tricky trade to be in but events like this are a great way of keeping up to date.”

Discussing the success of the show, Simon Moore, head of marketing at The Parts Alliance, said: “We’re delighted by the positive feedback we’ve had for this new venue, as well as the training sessions on offer.

“There are plenty more trade shows in the diary, so keep your eyes open for one taking place near you in the coming months.”

To find your nearest branch of The Parts Alliance, click here.

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