A BOROUGH has suspended MOT and supplementary tests for taxis and private hire vehicles.

Any vehicle proprietors who wish to renew their hackney carriage and private hire vehicle licences will be able to apply for a special dispensation from Blackburn with Darwen Council to allow the licence to be extended for three months.

No fee will be charged for this special dispensation.

The specialist tests are normally carried out at the council’s motor vehicle service station (MVSS).

Borough environment and operations director Martin Eden said: "Due to the Covid-19 emergency MVSS staff will not be carrying out testing of hackney carriages and private hire vehicles due to safety concerns for the staff involved and the taxi drivers.

"As there will be no mechanism to carry out the checks required, in order to allow the trade to continue operating, a short-term extension of licence will be made available for those who request it.

"All applicants for the dispensation will be advised of their duty to ensure their vehicle is safe, with information provided on the checks they should carry out as issued by government."