25 Nov 2018

West Auckland company loses right to issue WOFs

10:53 pm on 25 November 2018

Another vehicle inspection business has been immediately suspended over substandard Warrant of Fitness assessments.

Westland Automotive and Tyre in West Auckland.

Westland Automotive and Tyre in West Auckland. Photo: Google Maps

The New Zealand Transport Agency has suspended the right to carry out Warrant of Fitness tests at Westland Mechanical and Tyre Limited, which trades as as Westland Automotive and Tyre.

The West Auckland based business' sole director and shareholder Akram Zakeri has also been suspended as a vehicle inspector.

This follows concerns about his failure to check brakes, seatbelts, steering and exhaust systems.

A spokesperson for the Transport Agency said due to the poor quality of Mr Zakeri's inspections, it was possible some vehicles had been incorrectly passed.

The agency was not aware of any specific concerns relating to individual vehicles.

It will be contacting 3721 affected vehicle owners as soon as possible to warn them to get their vehicles rechecked.

When RNZ contacted Mr Zakeri, he denied doing anything wrong.

He said he had started an internal investigation and refused to comment further.

Meanwhile, Minister of Transport Phil Twyford has ordered a review into the Transport Agency after revelations it has failed to enforce safety standards in many inspection areas.

The agency has admitted knowing for years that a mechanic in Dargaville was not doing proper checks, and only clamped down after a fatal car crash.

Mr Twyford said he had been seriously concerned about the scope and seriousness of the failures that had occurred.

He said there were a number of issues that needed to be addressed to provide assurance to him and the public that deficiencies around NZTA's regulatory performance were identified and addressed.

NZTA said law firm Meredith Connell would be carrying out an extensive, independent review of NZTA's compliance files.

It said further enforcement actions would be announced.

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