285 vehicle tests cancelled at Coleraine Test Centre last week after a power cut. INCR
285 vehicle tests cancelled at Coleraine Test Centre last week after a power cut. INCR

A power cut at the Vehicle Test Centre in Coleraine last Wednesday resulted in almost 300 drivers having their vehicle MOT tests cancelled.

Yesterday (Monday), a Department of the Environment spokesperson confirmed that almost all of the affected customers had been contacted, and that new tests had been booked for those affected.

The Times understands that the power failure was the result of damage to an underground cable, which was not repaired until late on Wednesday evening.

Many Ballymoney drivers who travelled to the MOT centre were furious that they had not been notified in advance about the cancellations.

One customer we spoke to, who had taken time off work to put his car through the MOT test, described the scenes at the centre, at Loughanhill Industrial Estate, as ‘chaotic’.

“It is unbelievable that drivers were not told about the situation until they arrived at the test centre,” said the angry driver. “Surely contact details were taken at the time of the test booking, so customers could have been contacted beforehand.”

In a statement to The Times, a spokesperson for the DoE said: “Due to damage to an underground power cable, power was lost to the Coleraine Test Centre on Wednesday, 20 April.

“Northern Ireland Electricity replaced the damaged cable, and power was restored in time for testing to resume on Thursday 21 April. However, as a result of the power outage, the Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA) had to cancel 285 vehicle tests. 260 of those vehicles have been rescheduled, with a new appointment date and the DVA is in the process of contacting the remaining 25 customers to reschedule their appointment.”