More than half of the U.S. states require drivers to complete annual auto-emissions tests. A number of states, including Maryland, perform roughly two million auto emissions tests each year. Opus Inspection, the leader of vehicle emissions testing equipment and service, saw a need to simplify the process and sought to create a solution for drivers who were unable to visit stations during business hours.
Opus Inspection partnered with Meridian to create a robust outdoor solution. The new emissions-testing kiosks perform the same test technicians perform at full-service stations but do it at an unattended, self-service kiosks, providing a new convenience for drivers. Similar to self-checkout at a grocery store, users scan their emissions notice at the kiosk and pay with a credit card. Users then use a test device, located in a small compartment underneath the screen; they are able to then plug the testing device into the vehicle’s computer diagnostic system. The device tests whether the engine is working properly and if the vehicle’s emissions are meeting the state’s environmental standards. The kiosk screen shows when the test is completed, users remove the device, and return it to the kiosk where they retrieve the printed receipt. The entire process takes five to 10 minutes.
In August 2015, Maryland’s Motor Vehicle Administration initiated a program to deploy two self-service kiosks available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at the Glen Burnie VEIP station and the Gaithersburg MVA branch office. According to the MVA, the two original kiosks have performed more than 2,300 tests, with a customer satisfaction rating of 85 to 90 percent. Nine months after the initial deployment, Maryland’s MVA expanded the program to seven new stations. Drivers will are now able to perform their own vehicle emissions tests at Meridian self-service kiosks located at the Bel Air, Beltsville, Frederick, and Waldorf MVA branch offices, and at the Annapolis, Edgewood, and Owings Mills VEIP stations.
Ohio’s Choice Plus program has also found success with the addition of new emissions-testing kiosks. 16 E-check stations were deployed throughout Ohio as a crucial step in Ohio’s comprehensive air quality plan to reduce motor vehicle pollutants.