Car garage 'training gap' hurting motorists, research finds

A lack of transparency among car garages is leading to anger among motorists who are forced to suffer below par servicing and repair shops, new research has found.

According to the National Franchised Dealers’ Association (NFDA) and Trusted Dealers, 84 per cent of people in the UK were not aware that there are actually no minimum qualifications required to work in a car garage. This has led to a number of vehicle owners receiving shoddy work from what they believed to be reputable businesses.

For genuine motor trade companies who stand accused of substandard work, it can be useful to have professional indemnity and product liability cover as part of a combined motor trade insurance policy. This will protect a trader should it stand accused of offering poor advice or faulty products to its customers.

Incidents like this also highlight the value of defective workmanship cover; while motor traders would not expect to be accused of negligence on a regular basis, this provides another useful safety net in cases of complications or complaints relating to work undertaken by staff.

The NFDA meanwhile is encouraging the government to address the ‘training gap’ that exists between the technicians at franchised outlets and independent businesses, which can sometimes have less regulation when it comes to the quality of their staff.

NFDA director Sue Robinson commented: "The average car is a potentially lethal weapon if poorly maintained – making this a real issue of public safety.

"At present, anyone can open up a garage regardless of their background or ability and we think this is a situation that needs to change. Therefore we are calling for tougher, legally enforced minimum standards, to raise the bar in the industry."