Oct 2013

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That’s all it takes for a DEKRA Safety Check – Consider the safety of your family

We live under the false assumption that if we service our vehicles regularly, ergo they are roadworthy and safe. This could not be further from the truth and is a grave mistake, one that has tragic implications for all road users; drivers and passengers alike. Annually we cover thousands of kilometres in our vehicles, we travel to work and back every day, we travel on holiday with our families and unwittingly expose ourselves to potentially fatal risks.
Road safety and the roadworthy condition of a vehicle are affected by factors far beyond just the regular servicing of a vehicle; road safety is about the confluence of various factors – our rushed professional lives; attempting to balance family time with work demands, the congestion on our roads and the continued deterioration of the roads we travel and the mechanical and roadworthy condition of the vehicles we drive.

It is not uncommon today for professional business people to commute distances in excess of 150 km’s, placing excessive maintenance requirements on a vehicle. A dramatic increase in the number of vehicles on the road network over recent years means that much of the driving we do is of a stop/start nature, further exacerbating the rate of deterioration of the vehicle – ask any person who commutes daily from Pretoria to Johannesburg. Lastly, the condition of South Africa’s road network where potholes and roadside debris causes damage to a vehicle that initially may appear benign but over time will contribute significantly to the roadworthy condition and safety aspect of the vehicle.

Scheduled Manufacturer services are not the answer! Vehicle services adhere to a strict template designed by the OEM focusing on specific items on a checklist, the majority of which are not roadworthy or safety elements of a vehicle. For example: Tyre wear and structural integrity, suspension and steering components and a brake test. The sheer volume of vehicles moving through a Manufacturer’s workshop does not allow for the checking of items that do not form part of the service inspection list.

How can one mitigate this risk and prevent a tragedy occurring, a tragedy caused by something you can fundamentally control – the roadworthy condition and safety of your vehicle?

Whilst a regular roadworthy is not a legal requirement in South Africa as it is in many other countries, DEKRA in association with the AA recommends that privately owned vehicles undergo a quality roadworthy inspection once every 24 months irrespective of when last it was serviced. At the very least, every family owned vehicle should
undergo a DEKRA Safety Check inspection annually to ensure that the vehicle meets minimum roadworthy and safety requirements. A DEKRA Safety Check can identify worn or defective parts that do not form part of a standard Manufacturer’s service checklist.

December is holiday time in South Africa. Many thousands of us head for the sea, the mountains or the bush for a well earned rest. It is a time of summer sun, family and happy memories; and a time when motorists should be most vigilant about road safety and the condition of their vehicle considering the vast distances they plan to drive.

DEKRA believes in and supports the concept of No Mobility without Safety. This means that we should always be safe and feel safe wherever and whenever we travel and this also means that we should take

responsibility for controlling the safety variables of travelling on our roads; one of which is the roadworthy condition of our vehicles.

To support road safety in South Africa, DEKRA has launched the DEKRA Summer Safety Check Special that is available at all 42 DEKRA Test Centres nationwide at a Summer Special price of less 20%. It is inexpensive and is completed in 15 minutes. Visit us at to learn more about the DEKRA Safety Check and the specific elements of safety that are inspected by the DEKRA Examiners.