NCT odour debate lingers on

On an airing of RTÉ Liveline last month, a man called Connor phoned in about his unusual NCT test experience.

His vehicle was refused by a tester on the basis of a smell of fish present inside. The caller was a self-employed restaurant owner from Carrickmacross, Co. Monaghan, who occasionally transports fish in the car. He claimed the odour was not strong enough to cause the tester any immediate distress.

A staff member told him over the phone that a foul or unpleasant smell would be a Health and Safety issue to a tester. As a consequence, Connor was not even given a certificate of failure but did have his fee returned.

He was contentious about the guideline which mentions vehicle cleanliness. It requires a car to be “reasonably clean”, but it does not mention odours. He also referred to the fact that Applus+ is the only vehicle test company operating in Ireland, which meant he had nowhere else to go.

A spokesperson for the NCT Customer Service stated that “They should be in the condition that a tester can conduct the test in comfort. Obviously if the smell is too bad, they cannot perform the test and they have the right to stop it.”

He continued, “In the case of a dispute, you would have to speak to a team leader. They would be able to look at it better than we (at the call centre) would. If there was an issue of smell, they can make a judgment on it.” found some members of the public to react to this, and queried about how fair or unfair these measures are.

Photo Credits: Caro’s Lines on Flickr

Video Credits:

Reporter: Eoin Harmon

Camera: Kay Cairns

Production: Kay Cairns

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