What we do
The Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) complete a number of activities and schemes. The key areas of road safety and environmental standards improvement we contribute to are listed below:
VOSA supervise the MOT scheme to ensure that the 20,000 garages authorised to carry out MOT’s are doing so to the correct standards. This is done by: documenting all test methods and standards; approving and training Authorised Examiners and Nominated Testers to carry out MOT tests; authorising MOT test stations and Nominated Testers; monitoring standards of MOT garages and tests; providing seminars and other advisory services; dealing with appeals and complaints from MOT customers; and, where necessary, taking disciplinary action to improve testing standards and raise levels of compliance.
VOSA provide administrative support to the Traffic Commissioners’ in considering and processing applications for licenses to operate lorries and buses This ensures that licence holders meet the standards set for entry into the commercial vehicle operator industry and seeks to minimise the environmental and road safety impact around goods vehicle operating centres. Back
VOSA provide administrative support to the Traffic Commissioners’ in the registration of local bus services.Back
Testing and Inspections
VOSA conduct statutory annual testing for lorries and buses at 97 VOSA test stations and at private sector owned approved testing premises (designated premises).
We also offer a number of specialist inspections of vehicles. For example: certification of PSVs before they enter service; inspections of imported or amateur built vehicles to comply with acceptable safety and environmental standards (Single Vehicle Approval for cars and motorcycles); and inspections to check the identity of written off vehicles that are returned to the road (Vehicle Identity Check).Back
Enforcement and Compliance
Supporting the Traffic Commissioners’ to help them make informed decision on: operator licensing; vocational drivers and bus registration requirements; and, identifying operators against whom it may be appropriate to take disciplinary action by gathering and evaluating a range of data.
VOSA conduct routine and targeted checks on systems designed to check compliance with other road traffic legislation (e.g. drivers’ hours and load weights), specialised inspections for premises storing and vehicle transporting dangerous goods, perishable foodstuffs and goods sealed or Custom purposes; at the roadside as and at the operators’ premises, which are also examined to ensure compliance. We also approve applications from operators wanting to run lorries at increased weights.
The agency administers Vocational Driver Conduct cases referred by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency, and, where vocational drivers have committed non-edorsable road traffic offences. The compliance of local bus operators with their registered timetables is also monitored by VOSA.Back
Accident investigation and technical research
VOSA undertake technical investigations into potential manufacturing or design defects, highlighting safety concerns and monitoring safety recalls. We also support the Police by examining vehicles involved in accidents to identify contributory defects.Back
Training and education
VOSA provide a range of educational and advisory activities at the roadside, operating premises and on a one-to-one basis. We provide publications, videos and hold seminars to promote improved compliance of operators and drivers with roadworthiness and traffic regulations.
Commercial training courses and products are also available - see Training CoursesBack
To read more on the schemes listed above, please go to VOSA operational activities. This will provide you with a link to all our content on GOV.UK. The following publications also provide further information: