Hereford & Worcester

'Wrong tyres' derail steam roller test in Redditch

Steam roller test banned Image copyright Neil Urquhart
Image caption Neil Urquhart (in the white shirt) on his steam roller

A steam roller driver says he has been prevented from taking his driving test because his vehicle had the wrong type of tyres.

Neil Urquhart booked a test in his 10-tonne roller in Redditch for Thursday.

He says he was called by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) the night before and told he needed rubber tyres.

His vehicle has a metal roller, which he was told is not operable on a public highway.

A spokesman for the DVSA apologised for the inconvenience, and said it would contact Mr Urquhart to rearrange the test and refund the fee.

More on this and other stories from Hereford and Worcester

Image copyright Neil Urquhart
Image caption Mr Urquhart was told the metal tyres on his roller could damage public highways

Mr Urquhart said he was baffled when he was told he would need specialist rubber tyres fitted before he could take the test.

"It's kind of absurd, because how could any road roller work it if only had rubber tyres? It wouldn't flatten the ground properly," he said.

"They seem to have come up with a new rule which myself and the National Traction Engine Trust [NTET] are certainly not aware of, and so we're asking them to find this UK legislation and put it to us, because this kind of means that everyone who has a vehicle of this nature can't operate it on the road."

David Smith, head of technical services at the NTET, said there was no legal requirement for rollers to have rubberised tyres, and said other steam roller owners were "aghast" at the "bizarre" decision.

"It's a mystery, bluntly," he said.

"It's not done Nigel any good, because he took a day off work, and to be rung up just before and hear the test is off is disappointing.

"The human side of it isn't right, and the technical side of it, the legal side, is also not right. They've got it completely wrong."

Related Topics

Related Internet links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Internet sites