Centennial College’s Professor Thomas Brown answers some of Dennis’ questions from readers regarding automotive law.
COMMENT FROM A READER:
As a long time AST 310S & T Technician, I turn to your column every Friday. Your answers have always been spot on. I particularly like the way you intervene between car owners and repair shops, which has often resulted in the exposure of the customer’s lack of honesty. Please keep up the excellent and interesting columns. If you ever need some assistance on matters relating to Climate Control or Automotive Law, please feel free to contact me. Professor Thomas Brown Automotive Apprenticeship Program, Climate Control Department Centennial College, Toronto
MY COMMENT AND QUESTION:
I received this email from Thomas Brown, who is an esteemed professor from Centennial College in Toronto. When you have contact with someone who has this type of mechanical knowledge, you certainly do take advantage of his offer and expertise, which I have done.
I sent Professor Brown this following question, as it is one of many questions that I receive from my mechanical readers, as well as those who are not as mechanically inclined:
Dear Mr. Brown, “Thank you for taking the time to write to me. Have you heard anything about the government’s pledge to scrap the emission testing of vehicles and do you believe that it is a good idea to get rid of the emission testing of all vehicles?
ANSWER FROM PROFESSOR BROWN:
“Having perused the Drive Clean website (https://www.ontario.ca/page/drive-clean) and having asked around, there doesn’t seem to be a consensus on the future of Drive Clean. It looks therefore to be in place for the near future anyway. We do the training for inspectors at Centennial College. As far as my opinion, I must confess that I was heavily involved in the 90s with a group that pressured the Province to institute the program. The shop that I was associated with was one of the first to install a dynamometer. I do have a positive opinion on the need to keep vehicles in good running order and emissions at the manufacturer’s original levels. I am also in favor of an annual safety inspection for vehicles similar to the CVOR requirements for trucks. We must keep in mind that an unsafe car is a danger to others, not just the driver. The new Safety Standards Inspection Guidelines, introduced this summer, bring a lot of clarity to the technicians as to what is safe and unsafe. You may take comfort that from year one because we instill in the Apprentices that their duty is to prevent unsafe vehicles from being driven and show them how to identify these conditions.” Prof. Thomas Brown Toronto
MY SECOND QUESTION TO PROFESSOR BROWN:
There is something else that my mechanical readers are asking me about, all the time. Under the law, what are the technicians suppose to do, if anything, if a car that they have just inspected is unsafe for the road and the owner does not want to have it fixed at that time and is willing to drive it away?
“The HTA provides that no person shall permit the operation of an unsafe vehicle. Therefore, a technician must first inform the owner of such condition and if the customer leaves anyway, then to report the plate number to the police or MOT. Failure to do so generates a liability to the shop & the technician.”
Prof. T. Brown PS Readers, Please be advised that all emails cannot be answered. Send your questions (be sure to include your address) by email to: email@example.com or mail: Box 10019, Winona, ON L8E 5R1