Roadworthiness Testing – Deferred until 2022

The evidence never stood up, and now the trialogue negotiations have concluded we learn that motorcycles will not be subject to an NCT-style Roadworthiness Test… for the time being.

EU LogoOn Wednesday December 18th, the crucial trialogue negotiations in the EU Parliament concluded.

Because of insufficient evidence, motorcycles will be exempt from Roadworthiness Testing until 2022 while further studies are carried out.

Key Points:

  • This is a compromise position, and similar to the outcome of the TRAN Committee vote in July.
  • Motorcycles exempt until 2022, but testing still linked to casualties
  • Member states may defer testing beyond 2022 in some circumstances
  • Method of test and frequency to be decided by member states

The facts have not changed!

Remember, there is simply no substantive link between mechanical condition of your motorcycle and the likelihood of your being in an accident.To put it another way:

Correlation does not imply causation.

Therefore, the suggestion that a test be introduced if casualties remain high shows that the EU remains institutionally blind to tackling the real causes of motorcycle accidents.

FEMA logoMAG Ireland through our partners in FEMA, the Federation of European Motorcyclists’ Associations, is is currently studying the implications of today’s outcome for Irish riders.

We’ll be reporting further on this issue in due course.


Here’s a roundup of the key milestones in the process to date.

July 2010 – The EU Commission announces its intention to extend periodic technical inspections to motorcycles and begins a public consultation.

November 2010 – MAG Ireland formally adopts a position statement in which we say “While MAG Ireland are not opposed to the concept of Periodic Technical Inspection, we are opposed to dressing it up as a “Safety” initiative.”

March 2011 – Some 700 of you signed the petition against the EU Commission proposals for an NCT-Style test at the RDS bike show. Hundreds more sign in the weeks and months that follow.

FEMA Banner

MAG Ireland is a founder member of FEMA

October 2011 – MAG Ireland is part of a FEMA delegation to the EU Commission delivering over 110,000 signatures from riders across the Europe opposing the proposals.

November 2011 – MAG Ireland meets with the RSA to discuss the “Motorcycle NCT”.

December 2011 – The Irish Government supports the removal of motorcycles from the proposals at the EU Council.

January 2012 – EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas acknowledges riders petition.


EU Commissioner for Transport Siim Kallas
Claimed 8% of motorcycle accidents due to technical failures
(Image Credit: EU Commission)

April 2012 – EU Transport Commissioner Siim Kallas re-states his intention to target “The problem of motorcycles” first announced in July 2010.

July 2012 – The EU Commission formally publishes its proposals and claims that “8% of accidents involving motorcycles are caused or linked to technical defects”. International studies suggest the true figure to be less than 2%. The Commission refuses to provide evidence for it’s 8% claim, while the Road Safety Authority acknowledges that there is no evidence to support the introduction of a motorcycle NCT.

August 2012 – MAG Ireland collates evidence via FEMA from across the EU and prepares a briefing document for Irish MEP’s.

September 2012 – As part of an EU wide day of action, hundreds of riders take part in MAG Ireland’s “No Con Test” demo. A MAG Ireland delegation meets with Gay Mitchell MEP to discuss our briefing document.

October 2012 – France joins Sweden and The Netherlands in opposing the Commission proposals and in Finland a study finds the Cost/Benefit ratio of Roadworthiness Testing for motorcycles is “remarkably low”. MAG Ireland reminds the RSA of its stated commitment to carry out a similar study here.

November 2012 – During the debate on Type Approval in the EU Parliament, Gay Mitchell MEP takes the opportunity to remind the EU Commission that the case they put forward for imposing an NCT style test on motorcycles doesn’t stand up, quoting the MAG Ireland briefing document.

December 2012 – The European Council deletes the requirement for mandatory Road Worthiness Testing for motorcycles, opts to turn the regulation into a directive, thereby giving member states flexibility in how it is applied.

January 2013 – Riders representative organisation FEMA is excluded from the expert panel during a debate in the TRAN (Transport and Tourism) Committee of MEPs in the EU Parliament. This is seen as a snub to riders across Europe.

Werner Kuhn MEP

Werner Kuhn MEP

March 2013 – MAG Ireland makes representations to the Irish MEP’s questioning the objectiveness and democracy of the decision making process when Werner Kuhn, a German MEP & Rapporteur responsible for steering the Roadworthiness Testing proposals through the European Parliament repeatedly refuses to listen to the views of riders. German testing giant DEKRA is revealed as the source of the inflated 8% claim.

April 2013 – The influential Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) committee votes to change the proposal from a regulation to a directive and to exclude motorcycles entirely.

May 2013 – The crucial TRAN (Transport and Tourism) Committee in the EU Parliament votes to remove motorcycles from the Roadworthiness Testing proposals. We caution that the defeat will not be taken lightly by those in the EU Parliament who are determined to impose a test on motorcycles.

June 2013 – Infuriated at losing a democratic vote, the socialists and greens table eleventh hour amendments forcing motorcycles back into the framework just ahead of the final vote involving the full EU Parliament.

July 2013 – Because the vote was tight, and because it went against views of the expert committees, part of the compromise agreement was to enter into trialogue – In other words, a three-way discussion in which representatives of the EU’s three main institutions, the Council, Commission and Parliament try to reach agreement on a way forward.

December 2013 – Trialogue negotiations conclude. Testing of motorcycles is deferred.

See the announcement on the Lithuanian Presidency web site here.
MAG Ireland LogoWe in MAG Ireland will continue to monitor the situation as it unfolds. We continue to work with and through FEMA, the Federation of European Motorcyclists’ Associations on this and other key issues.

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