We’ve now seen ITV stations reopen after 2 months closed due to the state of Alarm. In Andalucia as we know Granada and Malaga were held back a week but are now fully functioning along with the rest of the stations up and down the province.
But things have changed somewhat from the pre lockdown system.
Firstly, appointments can only be booked online or by telephone, no longer can you turn and wait for a cancellation. For a vehicle whose inspection ran out during the state of alarm the government has modified the expiry dates so that there is time to pass the test. You can consult the new expiry date for your test here.
So how has the test changed since the stations have re-opened?
Here’s the experience I had on the first day they were open here in Malaga.
On arrival at the station, immediately there seemed to be fewer cars which I felt was strange because I had been told by a friend who is an inspector that they had cut the allotted time down for each test. On entering the station evidently, everybody is obligated to use a facemask, and like the supermarkets there is a hand sanitizer which you are encouraged to use. Confirming your appointment on the machine and waiting to be attended to is the same procedure as before. Though the waiting area has now been stripped of seats leaving a good space for us all to be stood social distancing while waiting for the number to appear on the screen.
The counters are now clad with a thick perspective screen with a small slot at the bottom to hand over the documents. It reminded me somewhat of a modern version of one of a wild west bank!
Once summoned by the TV screen to approach the counter, as always I handed over the paperwork, but have to be honest I couldn’t hear a thing, between the face masks and the perspex, all I got was a few muffles, but working on instinct and seeing the amount I was required to pay to appear on the card machine ( no cash allowed now ) I quickly swiped it and waited for the paperwork back. On handing the paperwork back the guy behind the counter did say something that I thought I needed to hear, so I asked him to repeat it and stuck my ear down firmly to the gap in the Perspex, ´´ Paperwork on the windscreen, windows all down and the seat belts buckled´´ he shouted, to which I cracked up laughing as there was 3 of us all in a line all doing the same thing struggling to hear. Turns out I’m not that deaf.
So with the paperwork stuck under the window wipers (could be tough on a rainy day) and the windows down. I was summoned to line 3 for the test to commence. Keeping a distance, the technicians ask me to slightly raise the far side passenger window so a walkie-talkie could be placed on it to give me instructions. The basic revision under the bonnet, and the light test are the same. The OBD machine is no longer plugged in. At no point does the technician enter the car but the emissions test is passed with instruction from the technician to rev the engine when required.
The seatbelt test you also must do yourself, uncoupling them and giving them a good tug to prove they work. After that, the rest of the test if pretty like what it has always been. Again, hearing someone talking on a walkie-talkie through a facemask can be testing, again at that I worked in the instinct.
On completion the paperwork and new sticker were placed on the passenger seat, not handed to me and we were set to go. The test took around 15 minutes. One thing to note is that although the OBD machine isn’t plugged in ( this is understanding is one of the adjustments to the test in Andalucia, I’m not to sure about the rest of Spain ) they did check the start-up sequence and lights on the dashboard, albeit stood behind me at an angle and a suitable distance. This test was passed in El Viso in Malaga, and subsequently I have passed a couple more in Mijas which were very similar. It seems that all the stations are adopting similar methods across the board here in Andalucia.
The great news is that now with the ITV stations up and running, and the DGT now open also. We are 100% go to restart registering cars in Spain again.