Greenlight for car dealers in Laois and elsewhere to open after lockdown welcomed by motor industry

Portlaoise dealership among those to take extensive measures

Conor Ganly

Reporter:

Conor Ganly

The Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) welcomed the Taoiseach’s recent announcement that car showrooms for sales, service and repair were permitted to open on Monday, May 18.

SIMI said the motor industry is complying with all Government and HSE protocols to protect the health and safety of customers and employees.

It said that like many retail businesses, there has been a significant level of investment in hand disinfectant, PPE equipment, signage, training, acrylic glass, specialist vehicle sanitising equipment to provide a safe environment, both for premises and vehicles.

Downey's Autostop on the Dublin Road in Portlaoise is among them. The established dealership and service business has installed signs, sanitizing stations and perspex among other measures to protect customers and staff from the spread of Covid-19.

SCROLL THROUGH THE GALLERY OF PICTURES ABOVE TO SEE SOME OF THE STEPS TAKEN.

Brian Cooke is SIMI's Director-General said the Government's green light to the industry is a good sign.

“This is a reflection of the professionalism of the industry and commitment to health and safety of motor retailers. The size of dealerships relative to footfall lends itself to social distancing, while sanitisation and other measures have been put in place for both premises and vehicles, should give customers reassurance.

"The industry has already played an important role during the lockdown supporting emergency and essential services, and the increased opening will allow members to contribute to their local economies in terms of business activity and supporting employment,” said Mr Cooke.