The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality today announced it is temporarily closing all vehicle inspection stations as of Tuesday, March 17, in an effort to mitigate the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus among staff and customers. VIP helps ensure vehicles are properly maintained so emission control systems keep pollution levels within EPA’s allowable standards. In Oregon, a vehicle emissions test is required prior to DMV registration in the Portland-Metro and Medford-Ashland areas every two years. Pending additional news, all stations will reopen on Wednesday, April 15.
“The health and safety of our employees and customers are DEQ’s top priorities,” said Richard Whitman, director, Oregon DEQ. “VIP prides itself on excellent customer service, which requires close contact among employees and drivers. However, current public health concerns mean we must do everything necessary to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”
The Environmental Quality Commission, DEQ’s policy and rulemaking board, is expected to adopt an emergency order during Wednesday’s virtual meeting to provide a blanket certification for vehicles with registrations expiring between February 15 and April 14, 2020 that have not already been renewed. This will allow the Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles to process registration renewals for these vehicles. DEQ will be providing additional details on these inspections.