Irish Farmers' Association welcomes Transport Minister's u-turn

Minister Shane Ross had looked set to insist on an NCT-type test for tractors, but he has now revealed that different regulations for testing tractors have been agreed.

It means that so-called fast tractors will be exempt from new regulations that require an NCT for vehicles that can travel over 40km/h.

The IFA's national environment chairman Thomas Cooney today said he has "welcomed the pragmatic decision by Transport Minister Shane Ross to limit the requirement for compulsory roadworthiness testing to tractors doing non-agricultural work, and with a maximum design speed exceeding 40km/h".

He added: “After months of protracted negotiations, it is good to see IFA has convinced Minister Ross and his officials to accept that farmers are already heavily regulated when it comes to transporting farm produce.

“For example, farmers are currently legally required under the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 to ensure that brakes, handbrake, mirrors, lights, indicators, wipers and hitches are all in working order.

“We understand and support safety. However, we oppose excessive and wasteful duplication, whether that’s in transport or other inspections.

“Minister Ross must now immediately publish the clear definitions and regulations which give effect to this decision. There can be no room for confusion.”

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