Unified guidance for the remarketing sector on how to comply with safety guidance as the COVID-19 crisis eases and businesses re-open has been released by the Vehicle Remarketing Association in conjunction with the BVRLA, FLA and NAMA.
The new document, “COVID-19 Guidance for Vehicle Collection, Delivery, Distribution, Storage and Technical Services” is designed to clarify the requirements that apply on vehicle and parts collections, delivery and distribution, storage and technical services.
Philip Nothard, vice chair at the VRA, explained: “This is something on which we started collaborating around three weeks ago. We were aware that specific guidance was being created for other areas of remarketing – such as motor auctions – but not around the movement and technical services side, which we consider to be to essential to the efficient and effective working of remarketing processes across the industry.
“It made sense to all work together to provide a unified and authoritative approach in this area, rather than all the industry bodies releasing competing and perhaps even potentially contradictory guidance, creating a degree of confusion.
“We’ve worked hard to access the expertise that exists in each of the four trade bodies to provide best practice advice that has genuine relevance for businesses that are coming out of lockdown and want to do their very best to protect employees and customers.
“One of the pleasing effects of the current crisis, in among the many very difficult and very real problems it has created, is the way that there has been much increased co-operation across the sector, with a real spirit of mutual support, and this document is very much a result of that mood.”
Philip said that the document was not intended to provide guidance at a granular level but was instead intended to help remarketing businesses create an infrastructure for their COVID-19 safety measures.
“It is very much a digest of all of the existing Government advice at this point in time, presented in such a way that it allows organisations to see how it applies to their business and the areas in which they need to take action.
“This is very much about explaining the guidelines and the legal framework within which organisations are having to operate using language and a format that is easy to understand, rather than advising on specifics.”
Louise Wallis, Head of the National Association of Motor Auctions (NAMA), added: “This guidance covers an operational area that has commonality across a range of automotive sectors. Although each sector will have its own guidance, it made sense to develop common guidance for vehicle collection, delivery, distribution and storage. These businesses will be working closely together and will need to have comparable processes in place to protect employees and customers through this difficult and unusual situation.”
The VRA represents businesses involved in the remarketing of 1.5m cars and vans every year, and chair Sam Watkins, chair of the VRA, explained that the organisation had been working hard to help its members during the COVID-19 crisis.
“This is one of those moments when a trade body such as the VRA really comes into its own, providing a forum where information, concerns and best practise can be freely exchanged at a time when those things have very real value. The new guidance follows on from other initiatives we have undertaken during lockdown, such as holding a series of regular webinars, that have proven very popular.”
The document can be downloaded at https://www.fla.org.uk/business-information/documents/covid-19-guidance-for-vehicle-collection-delivery-distribution/