Vehicle inspection

Vehicle Inspection In Nigeria

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The causes of road traffic accidents is well known to people. Of which un-roadworthy motor vehicles are one of them under mechanical cause of road traffic crashes. This prompted the government of Nigeria to establish National Vehicle Inspection Scheme otherwise known as Vehicle Testing.

Causes Of Un-roadworthy Vehicle

Vehicle inspection showing un-roadworthy vehicle
  • Inadequate and substandard vehicle testing equipments
  • Refusal to comply to the vehicle safety standards by motorists
  • Inadequate financial ability for proper maintenance
  • Professional laxity on the part the law enforcement agencies involved
  • Inadequacy of well-trained personnel to handle the testing
  • Poor road conditions
Poor road conditions

Brief History Of Vehicle Inspection In Nigeria

The Nigerian police was in charge of vehicle Inspection until 1965 in the northern Nigeria and 1975 in the south when the ministry of works took over. The national vehicle inspection scheme is one of the scheme embarked upon by the Federal Road Safety Corps(FRSC) to reduce the high rate of road accidents. Under the scheme following CAP 141 of section 3(2)b FRSC produces the road worthiness validity tag which is issued along with road worthiness certificate by the Road Traffic Officers(RTO) as a means of harmonizing the procedure of inspecting un-roadworthy vehicle

The Administration Of Vehicle Inspection Or Examination

The administration of vehicle examination involves the following

  • Establishment of Vehicle Inspection Officers/ Vehicle Inspection Officers(VIO) in all states and FCT for implementation of vehicle examination
  • FRSC produces a manual for vehicle inspection. The manual took consideration on the interest of RTO, the police, FRSC and the Institute of Motor Industry (IMI) standards.

Road Traffic Officers /VIO

Vehicle inspection officers

The RTO are to

  • Examine motor vehicles
  • Test drivers
  • Issue license
  • Collect revenue


FRSC operatives vehicle inspection on Nigerian roads
  • Designing and producing the Nigerian National and International drivers license to be used by various categories of vehicle operators
  • Establish the Nigerian National Vehicle Safety Standards
  • Inspect vehicle
  • Enforce the use of vehicle Inspection

The Police

Police officers on duty.

The police are to

  • Enforce the use of vehicle with valid road worthiness certificate
  • Enforce driving with a valid driver’s license
  • Vehicle mechanical examination is expected to be carried out every three(3) months for passengers vehicle and every six(6) months for goods transport vehicle. Every year for private vehicles. However, an inspection pass is issued to vehicle heading for ECOWAS region. The validity tag is affixed to vehicle windscreen and it shows the date of issuance and expiration. The number on the vehicle tag as well as that of General Motor Receipt (GMR) is often coded on the Road worthiness certificate

Types Of Vehicle Inspections

  • Pre-registration Inspection. This inspection is done on vehicle brought for registration to ensure conformity to NRTR
  • Spot check inspection done on the highway
  • Evaluation inspection
  • Accident inspection done on accident vehicle to help court proceedings.

Motor Vehicle Parts Inspection

Body and Chassis

Vehicle interior and exterior. Interior checks includes- horn, hand breaks, head rest, seatbelts, speedometer, door interior, etc. Exterior checks includes- vehicle body and floor for rust and tear, under chassis nut bolts for slackness or missing, brakes, door latches, wipers, suspension, mirrors, windshield, tyres,battery, etc


A vehicle engine

Engine sitting, battery sitting for tear, wear and rust. Internal engine condition

Lamp signal

Parking, reversing, break, hazard, full and dip. Tests all lights for their functionality

Transmission suspension and steering system

Drives the vehicle around and listen for odd sounds that may be coming from the clutch assembly, gearbox, propeller shaft and its universal joints, rear axle and the wheels. Check all steering linkages. Check tyres for correct pressure, the tread depth and casing condition

Breaking on good speed

Under varying road condition apply the brake to determine the stopping distance and effects of braking on true rolling motion of the vehicle at varying speeds. Note the effort applied to effect a stop.

Safety, warning and emergency devices

Vehicle inspection showing vehicle safety kits

Seatbelts in vehicle crash helmet on motorcycle, driving mirrors, windshield, speed regulator, first aid kit, warning triangles, fire extinguisher, Jack and wheel spanner, and all in proper working conditions

After the checks have been carried out, “Off The Road” will be issued if the vehicle is un-roadworthy. Or a color coded “Certificate Of Road Worthiness” and road worthiness validity tag affixed to the vehicle if found road worthy. This is issued every 3 and 6 months or passenger and goods transport vehicle.

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