Garage owner forced to pay £11,150 following trading standards sting

Investigation conducted as part of council's undercover car servicing enforcement exercises

Garage owner forced to pay £11,150 following trading standards sting
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The owner of an independent garage in Warwickshire has been fined £1,500, ordered to pay prosecution costs of £9,500 and a £150 victim surcharge following a Trading Standards operation, the Rugby Advertiser reports.

During an undercover operation by Warwickshire County Council Trading Standards officers, it was found that staff at Binley Woods Service Centre had failed to attend to nine separate faults.

The workshop had failed to top up either the coolant or power steering fluid, had not replaced the fuel filter and had not checked the tyre pressures.

Workshop failures

The trader reported that the offside rear tyre was on the limit and had a tread depth of 1.6mm whereas the minimum depth on this tyre was actually 3.44mm.

The garage had also failed to notify the undercover officer of a split wiper blade, noisy nearside rear wheel bearing or the condition of the spark plugs.

Related: Tyre fitting business under investigation after setting up in former corner shop

Finally, the rear offside seatbelt stalk was trapped beneath the rear seat cushion suggesting that the function of the rear seat belts had not been checked.

At Coventry Magistrates Court on Wednesday, November 6, Charnjit Sekhon, trading as Binley Woods Service Centre, was found guilty of an offence contrary to regulation 9 of the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008.

“Killing machines”

Deputy District Judge Jonas, presiding, stated in his judgement that vehicles are “killing machines”.

Adding that they can kill if they are driven dangerously or even carelessly and they can kill if they are not maintained properly.

Scott Tompkins, assistant director for environment services said: “Most of us are not experts in vehicle maintenance and we rely upon garages to carry out car services properly so that we can have confidence our vehicles are satisfactorily maintained.

“Warwickshire Trading Standards will continue to carry out this important work to protect road users.”

Workshop changes

In mitigation, Mr Scott representing Mr Sekhon said his client was of previous good character and there had been only one incident.

He had also made changes to the quality control system.

Warwickshire Trading Standards regularly carries out undercover car servicing enforcement exercises.

An expert vehicle examiner places faults on cars before they are submitted for services at garages across Warwickshire.

On completion, the vehicle expert then examines the vehicles to see if the garages have carried out the services to an acceptable standard.

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Home Page Forums Garage owner forced to pay £11,150 following trading standards sting

Viewing 6 posts - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)
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  • #188212 Reply
    graham cox
    Guest

    halfords and kwick fit do this on a daily basis are they going to get fined??

    #188214 Reply
    Dougal
    Guest

    Of course we do not know which service was requested or which service was charged for.
    But some of these items would have been in any service.

    Every case like this is bad news for us all !

    #188215 Reply
    blue
    Guest

    I work for a company that maintains a blue light fleet, we have gone from a 8 week safety inspection cycle to a 6 month cycle. Unfortunately safety now comes 2nd to availability and nobody cares its astonishing how they get away with it.

    #188282 Reply
    Steve J
    Guest

    as an independent excersise ive just looked at a typical run of the mill vehicle on Autodata service schedules (i choose a 13 plate Hyundai i20) to see what theyre version of checkable items are applicable at service intervals, firstly i looked at the first 4 service checklists and not once did it mention that a seat belt reciever is a checkable item.
    seat belts are checked for MOT purposes and not service items (certainly on the above vehicle) ive not checked any other vehicle.
    its just another example of words beating practicality.
    obviously the other missed items should have been noted.

    s

    #188326 Reply
    Paul Taylor
    Guest

    Call me a fossil but I came from an era when you had carbs and points you serviced your car twice a year summer and winter service items/fluids were changed/checked yearly as they were not that reliable things rusted and quite often fell off but you knew what you was doing. With today’s cars and technology it is a virtual mine field of variables of time related intervals, long life this and that, special oils and procedures, no 2 cars are the same and customers have access to information and will soon tell you if you have spent to long or charged to much for their car. They don’t want to know you have charged an extra 1/2 hour checking things that are not on the list making sure it is safe. What is the correct service for a car? most small one man band’ers can afford to have access to this info plus the yearly updates and the diagnostics m/c to go with it. If you have not serviced it from new that is the only way to know it has been done to manufactures specs and corners have not been cut. All cars are different how can you have a set service working from a set service schedule usually comprising of a main and interim service There are to many back street cowboys out there giving the trade a bad name it we already have an up hill struggle it needs regulation.

    #188717 Reply
    Paul baldwin
    Guest

    Maybe an answer is to regulate the industry I have seen up selling by Halfords and kwikfit plus main dealers that is totally unnecessary

Viewing 6 posts - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)

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