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Written by Aaron Brigatti  
Friday, 02 April 2010

Well my response to VOSA was short and sweet...I change tact a little bit, rather than directly responding to the points raised in their 1st April response,I decided to use a question-prompt approach. 

This should see whether VOSA's responses PROOF that there were incompetent in the way their dealt with the safety defect report!

"Thank you for your letter dated and received on 1st April. 

I would like to receive your responses on the following questions, to help me understand your department’s safety investigation procedures.  We need to discount maintenance from the responses, as the parts were designed and manufactured as maintenance-free at the time of my case:

  • Please define what is the main purpose of a bonnet safety catch mechanism?  Isn’t this a mechanism that should prevent a bonnet from releasing all the way if the main catch releases (for whatever reason)?
  • Is there a chance (no matter how small) that a safety catch may not function as designed and what is VOSA’s acceptable percentage failure-threshold for it to still be deemed “safe”?  
  • Is it acceptable that a safety catch functionality cannot prevent a bonnet releasing all the way in 100% of cases (i.e. a failure occurs)?  
  • Is a change in state from maintenance-free to maintenance-required confirmation that a change in the mechanism design and manufacturing specification exists?
  • During a VOSA investigation, would you inspect any vehicles which have experienced the actual reported defects?
  • Did VOSA inspect ANY vehicles which experienced the Clio Mark-2 bonnet catch failure? And if so, did you document your findings and why is it not published under the FoI?
  • Would a 50k+ vehicle volume of MOT failures (linked to a bonnet catch mechanism issue) indicate that a significant safety risk exists to the same mechanism?  What failure threshold would trigger a defect investigation (what risk is too great)?  Is the bonnet failures bigger than just Renault Clio’s – is it a known industry safety risk? 
  • Have you considered vehicles volumes that are not due for MOT in your statistics – and those that are on a 2yr/18k maintenance schedule – where the risks are greater?
  • During Renault’s dealership maintenance communication, what is VOSA’s position on Clio Mark-2’s not serviced by the Renault dealership network?  Same servicing notice issued?
  • Are “invitation” notification letters enforced and formally recorded in the same way as the VOSA Recall system?   Why wasn’t the formal Recall used?

I await your response as appropriate to the above points.  Thank you in advance."

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