More Talk About Abolishing the Mandatory Annual Vehicle Inspection

There is more talk about asking the Texas Legislature next year to abolish the annual vehicle safety inspection, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.

The Center for Transportation Research at the University of Texas is investigating the usefulness of requiring all vehicles to under an annual inspection and will issue a report to the Legislature.Proposals to abolish mandatory safety inspections have been introduced in the last two sessions but have never gotten much traction.

The American Automobile Association says mandatory vehicle inspections have become increasingly antiquated as cars, pickups, and other vehicles have become far safer and far better built in recent decades.  In fact, the AAA says only 17 states require mandatory vehicle inspections, although some require a safety inspection when a car is sold, or if a police officer detects a potential safety problem with a vehicle.

"Nobody can prove with any degree of certainty that spending the money and suffering the inconvenience of getting your vehicle inspected every year actually produces desired results," AAA Spokesman Mike Wright said. 

 Estimates are that fewer than one percent of all traffic accidents are caused by the failure of one of the parts and systems which is inspected.  Driver error and driver inattention are by far the most common caused of car wrecks.

Opponents of mandatory state inspections call it a $7 tax, which goes into the state's general fund to be spent as part of the general state budget.

Many lawmakers say it is the persistence of lobbyists for the small auto shops that perform annual inspections that blocks the Legislature from repealing the law.

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