Minister confirms merging of DSA and VOSA

It has been confirmed by transport minister Stephen Hammond that the Driving Standards Agency (DSA) and the Vehicle Operator Services Agency (VOSA) are to merge before the end of 2014, which the government says could lead to a reduction in fees charged for the use of their services.

The DSA issued a press release on June 20th outlining the planned changes, which has so far been met with a generally positive, if understandably cautious, response from different influential groups including the Freight Transport Association (FTA) and the Road Haulage Association (RHA).

It is understood that the current chief executive of VOSA, Alastair Peoples, is to be named as the leader of the new single agency, which will be responsible for the more efficient and convenient delivery of services ranging from overseeing driving tests to issuing MOT certificates for second hand Ford cars.

Commenting on the merger, Hammond reassured people that 'these changes will put customers at the heart of the services they rely on and allow for a more coherent approach to service delivery'. Hammond also went on to emphasise that the decision was not a reflection on any kind of poor performance by staff at the existing bodies, explaining that 'staff at the DSA and VOSA do a great job in delivering for customers every day and we will work closely with them to support them through these changes'.

Those in charge of ensuring this transition goes smoothly will be well aware of the importance of causing a minimum of disruption to the UK's motoring public, whether they are in the process of preparing for their theory test, purchasing a new model such as a Ford Fiesta for sale, or simply carrying on with their driving life as normal. The chief executive of the RHA, Geoff Dunning, summarised the situation by saying that the move 'makes obvious sense to an industry that is surrounded by regulations', but that he and his colleagues remain 'concerned that this is another case of the devil being in the detail'.

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