Second-hand car yards in the Riverland area have been targeted in the latest Consumer and Business Services (CBS) and SA Police (SAPOL) joint operation.
Over two days 14 car yards and 222 cars were inspected by officers from CBS and SAPOL, Commissioner for Consumer Affairs, Paul White said.
“In early September, CBS and SAPOL officers conducted monitoring in the towns of Berri, Renmark, Glossop, Loxton and Waikerie for compliance with the Second-hand Vehicle Dealers Act 1995 and Road Traffic Act 1961,” the Commissioner said.
“A number of minor defects were detected in vehicles for sale at the second-hand car yards subject to the operation, most of which related to defective seatbelts and engine issues.
These vehicles have since been removed from sale.
“Signs of possible unlicensed second-hand vehicle dealing were also detected and this is now being investigated further by CBS officers.
“However, it was pleasing to see that results for compliance in respect to schedules, contracts and warranty and cooling-off rights was quite high.”
The Commissioner said the joint operation also provided an opportunity to remind and educate licensees in the Riverland area of their obligations under the Act.
“Vehicles are a significant and expensive purchase for consumers and the law puts in place measures to enable consumers to make that purchase with confidence,” Mr White said.
“Unfortunately, there are some dodgy dealers who do not comply with the law and tarnish the reputation of the vehicle sales industry.
“Since September 2012, CBS received 65 complaints and 52 enquiries in relation to second-hand vehicle dealers, many of which were in relation to warranty work, advertising and representation, and the quality of the car or service.
“CBS is responsible for the regulation of the second-hand vehicle dealers in South Australia and conduct regular monitoring to ensure that licensees are complying with their requirements under the law.
“Information was provided to second-hand car yards that were targeted in the operation to reiterate these requirements.”
Consumers can check if a dealer is licensed by going to: http://pubreg.ocba.sa.gov.au/ and they can check the history of a vehicle by checking the Personal Property Securities Register at: www.ppsr.gov.au.
CBS also has a free publication available to consumers called “Autocheck” full of tips for buying a car at: www.cbs.sa.gov.au/assets/files/buying_maintaining_car_web.pdf
If consumers have any concerns about their dealings with second-hand car yards they should contact CBS on 131 882.