What is really required in accordance with the Disabled Driver Scheme?
As a result of the implementation of EC Directive 2007/46/EC, the requirement for National Approval of new (pre-registered) Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) category M1 vehicles (1) comes into effect from 29th April, 2012.
(1) ‘Special purpose vehicle (SPV)’ means a vehicle of category M, N or O having specific technical features in order to perform a function which requires special arrangements and/or equipment.As a result of this, certain adaptions to vehicles for disabled drivers (and passengers) now change the classification from “M1” to “M1 Special Purpose Vehicles”; hence requires an Individual Vehicle Approval (IVA) Certificate from NSAI.
NSAI has developed a system of approval that will allow Licensed Adaptors to apply for IVA’s for adapted vehicles. Licensed Adaptors and the vehicles they adapt will be subject to inspection on an on-going basis.
From our experience to date, a typical adaption would be installing hand controls for brake and accelerator function and/or modifying seats to allow them to swivel 90 degrees to allow ease of entry/exit of the vehicle for the driver or passenger. However, there have been other adaption’s which also required an IVA.
There have been examples of other modifications to the vehicle which NSAI determined did not classify the vehicle as a special purpose vehicle, hence the vehicles original approval was still valid and an IVA was not required.
There has been some communication between NSAI and licensed adapters as regards what changes to the vehicle
would require an IVA and which might not. Please see the following attachment for communication which outlines some of these scenarios:
When IVA is required due to adaption
NSAI maintains a Register of all Licensed Adaptors
To become a licenced adaptor, please complete and submit the application form to NSAI.
Once the application form has been received you will be contacted to schedule a workshop assessment.
On receipt of the application, an application fee of €150 will be invoiced.
The fee for the assessment will be €950 and this will also cover the annual licence fee for the first year.
In subsequent years an annual licence fee of €950 will be invoiced.