DMV inspection system outage creates headache for auto shops

November 28, 2016 11:10 PM

After an outage for most of the day on Monday, the DMV's inspection system appears to be working again. News10NBC is told the system started to come back online Monday evening.

It was a frustrating day for auto shops and for customers. It's the end of the month, a lot of folks with expiring inspections were trying to take care of business and unfortunately, they were turned away.

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Dennis Williams, owner of My-Tee Automotive, knew right away it was going to be a bad day. Each time, his mechanics tried to link to the state's inspection system, they had issues.

"Sometimes we could get through to do an inspection, a few minutes later, we'd try again and nothing would happen, we'd get locked out of the machine," he says.

By 10 a.m., they got locked out for good. And the way the system works, you can't just keep doing inspections and file them with the state later. So, they had to start turning away customers.

"When this thing goes down, all of the sudden it's like they've already agreed to drop their car off, leave it for the day, get a ride to work, get a ride back," says Williams. "Then, I have to call them and tell them I can't get it done, not because it won't pass, but because the state computer can't talk to us."

There were similar frustrations from the owner of East Ave. Auto, Paul Marone.

"Once you start an inspection, in some cases, you take the sticker off the car and then you're not able to reissue a new sticker for the car, nor could you issue a 10-day permit to the car, so realistically, the car can't be driven for the day," says Marone.

It appears no one was getting any answers from the Department of Motor Vehicles.

"The help desk at the state was down, nobody could get through to anybody," says Marone.

The DMV did call us back to say the inspection system is administered by a third party -- a company called Opus. The system had been down all day, but by 5 p.m., Opus thought the problem had been rectified. Just what that problem was they wouldn't say.

"We really strive for customer service, that's what we pride ourselves on, on being able to take care of our customers better than anyone else and this doesn't help," says Williams.

"People depend on us being able to inspect their car, we depend on the state being able to supply the system that inspects them," adds Marone.

According to the auto shops, this is not the first time this has happened but it is the longest the system has been out and at the wrong time of the month.

While the DMV believes the issues have been fixed, if you've got an appointment for an inspection Tuesday, it's best to call ahead to your mechanic to make sure everything is running smoothly again.


Jennifer Lewke

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