—(1) Subject to the provisions of this Act, it shall not be lawful to use a vehicle or trailer which does not comply with the rules as to construction, weight and equipment applicable to the class or description of vehicles to which the vehicle or trailer belongs.
(2) The Authority may, by notification in the Gazette, authorise, subject to such restrictions and conditions as may be specified in the notification, the use of special vehicles or trailers or special types of vehicles or trailers which are constructed either for special purposes or for tests or trials and of new or improved types of vehicles or trailers whether wheeled or wheel-less.
(3) The Authority may at any time revoke, vary or amend a notification made under this section.
(4) Subject to this section, it shall not be lawful to sell or to supply or to offer to sell or supply a vehicle or trailer for delivery in such a condition that the use thereof in that condition would be unlawful by virtue of this section.
(5) Subject to this section, it shall not be lawful to alter a vehicle or trailer so as to render its condition such that the use thereof in that condition would be unlawful by virtue of this section.
(6) If a vehicle or trailer is used or is sold, supplied, offered or altered in contravention of this section, any person who so uses the vehicle or trailer or causes or permits the vehicle or trailer to be so used or so sells, supplies, offers or alters it or causes or permits it to be so sold, supplied, offered or altered shall be guilty of an offence.
(7) Any person who is guilty of an offence under subsection (6) shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding $2,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 3 months and, in the case of a second or subsequent conviction, to a fine not exceeding $5,000 or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months.
(7A) Where in any proceedings relating to an offence under subsection (6), it is proved to the satisfaction of the court that a vehicle or trailer is used or caused or permitted to be used in contravention of this section, the court may, upon the application of the Public Prosecutor, make an order for the vehicle or trailer to be detained for a period not exceeding 3 months (referred to in this section as the detention period) by the Registrar or an authorised officer.
(7B) Any vehicle or trailer detained pursuant to subsection (7A) shall be kept at such place of safety as may be determined by the Registrar or an authorised officer.
(7C) The Registrar or an authorised officer shall not be liable for —
any damage to or loss of a vehicle or trailer during the period when the vehicle or trailer is in the possession of the Registrar or the authorised officer which is not wilfully or negligently caused by the Registrar or the authorised officer in the exercise of his powers under this section; or
any depreciation in the value of the vehicle or trailer because of the detention of the vehicle or trailer.
(7D) At the end of the detention period of any vehicle or trailer, the Registrar or an authorised officer shall, as soon as is reasonably practicable, notify the person in whose name the vehicle or trailer is registered that the vehicle or trailer is released from detention and of the procedure by which the person may secure the release of the vehicle or trailer.
(7E) If the vehicle or trailer is not claimed by the person notified under subsection (7D), or another person authorised in writing by that person, within 3 calendar days after the date of its release as stated in the notice in subsection (7D), the person notified under that subsection shall be liable for all charges reasonably incurred by the Registrar or an authorised officer in storing the vehicle or trailer in the place of safety thereafter.
(7F) Any person who, without lawful authority, removes or causes to be removed any vehicle or trailer from the place of safety at which it is detained during its detention period shall be guilty of an offence.
(7G) If any vehicle or trailer detained pursuant to subsection (7A) is not claimed by or on behalf of the person notified under subsection (7D), the Registrar or an authorised officer may, after giving one month’s notice in the Gazette of his intention to do so, sell the vehicle or trailer by public auction or otherwise dispose of the vehicle or trailer in such manner as he thinks fit.
(7H) The proceeds, if any, from the sale or disposal of any such vehicle or trailer under subsection (7G) shall be applied —
firstly, in payment of any licence fee which may be due in respect of the vehicle or trailer;
secondly, in payment of expenses occasioned by the sale or disposal and any charges reasonably incurred in storing, detaining or otherwise carrying out the provisions of this section; and
thirdly, any damage caused to any property of the Government by the unlawful use of the vehicle or trailer,
and the surplus, if any, shall be paid to the person in whose name the vehicle or trailer was registered at the time of its sale or disposal or, if not claimed by such person within 12 months after the date of the sale or disposal, shall be forfeited to the Government.
(7I) The Registrar or an authorised officer may reject any transfer of ownership or cancellation of registration of a vehicle or trailer if the Registrar or the authorised officer has reason to believe that any person is guilty of an offence under subsection (6).
(8) A person shall not be convicted for an offence under this section in respect of the sale, supply, offer or alteration of a vehicle or trailer if he proves that it was sold, supplied, offered or altered, as the case may be, for export from Singapore, or that he had reasonable cause to believe that the vehicle or trailer would not be used in Singapore or would not be so used until it had been put into a condition in which it might lawfully be so used.
(9) In this section, “authorised officer” means any employee of the Authority who is duly authorised by the Registrar in writing to act under this section.