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Consumer Rights (qld)

Discussion in 'Politics, Laws, Government & Insurance' at netrider.net.au started by rpmorrell, Dec 3, 2009.

  1. #1 rpmorrell, Dec 3, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 13, 2015
    . . . . . . . Consumer Rights . . . . . . . .

    I’m interested in people’s problems with their bikes & how they got the problems resolved.
    I’m presently going through Office Of Fair Trading in Qld, but fear it may be just another Govenment Toothless Tiger.
    I'd like to hear from anyone who has had to deal with serious issues with their bikes & what consumer action was taken etc.

    1) My wife & I purchased two Derbi GP1 250cc scooters on 1.7.08.

    2) We cannot continue to use this product because it has proven itself to be too dangerous & too unreliable. We no longer ride these for safety reasons & they definitely do not meet our expectations.
    We have been severely inconvenienced too much already.
    We have tried & tried to get the problems resolved to no avail.
    The worry & on-going issues with these bikes have considerably impacted on our respective health issues; worrying every time one of us rode the bikes.....wondering whether a fire, accident, gearbox seize or heavens knows what else is going to happen.

    3) The unregistered dealer, ScooterHQ, has withheld critical safety information from us & other customers about the potential for the fuel tank to leak, & be a fire risk.
    I have emails to show ScooterHQ were aware of this when I reported our 1st leak to them.

    4) My wife’s bike has had its tank replaced twice because the fuel, on two separate occasions, poured out of the bike, at a servo. Very dangerous & distressing.

    5) My tank has been replaced, yet is leaking again!
    I am amazed that there was never any formal alert or recall about this.

    6) The dealer has not been able to fix the continued sporadic idle & stalling problems that make the bike difficult & dangerous to control in traffic. As per [media=youtube]LxfFGUTBC9g[/media]

    7) The dealer has not been able to fix a gearbox noise & vibration as per

    8 ) We have journeyed over 2,000 kilometres to ScooterHQ using our own car, trailer & bikes for attention to the bikes.
    DATE 11.10.2008
    REASON Shel’s 2nd tank fuel-dump: 2nd tank replace, wheels balance, tappets re-set, & gearbox noise problem.
    OUTCOME bike deposited only.

    DATE 25.10.2008
    REASON Collect Shel’s bike, & deposit my bike. My bike tank replace, wheels balance
    OUTCOME Shel’s tank replaced, but gearbox & idle problem still exists.

    DATE 1.11.2008
    REASON Collect Rob’s bike
    OUTCOME Rob’s bike tank replaced, wheels balanced.

    DATE 31.01.2009
    REASON Stalling/idle problem with both bikes. Rode the bikes there.
    OUTCOME Could not fix one bike, & the other was not even looked at, because the mechanic didn’t know…..even though I have emails to prove discussion was about both bikes.

    DATE 02.05.2009
    REASON Rode both bikes to ScooterHQ to get exhaust covers replaced & speedo cable replaced because all these had been damaged whilst in the care of DerbiAU rep, Simon Wiseman, whom used a domestic rusty old garden trailer to transport our bikes from our home for idle problems (still not fixed), & so the bikes were damaged & speedo cable broken.
    Also, the bikes were returned with battery acid leaked over the frame because the overflow hoses had not been connected to the replaced batteries. Despite my flushing them with water (in presence of Simon Wiseman) I have no idea if any acid damage to aluminium frame & other components.
    We still had the idle problems when we visited ScooterHQ, but we elected not to say anything because we knew the outcome would be the same as before, & therefore did not want more of our time wasted with ScooterHQ.
    OUTCOME Parts replaced & speedo working.

    9) We have journeyed over 278 kilometres to our nearest dealer in Noosa, using our own car & trailer.
    DATE 19.09.2008
    REASON Shel’s 1st tank fuel-dump
    OUTCOME Tank replaced

    10) We have journeyed over 317 kilometres using our own car & trailer as rescue missions for the bike.
    DATE 06.08.2008
    REASON Shel’s bike dumped it’s fuel at a Yandina servo. Bike un-rideable & dangerous. This is from 1st tank.

    DATE 30.09.2008
    REASON Shel’s bike dumped its fuel at Maroochydore servo. Bike un-rideable & dangerous. This is from 2nd tank.

    I don’t ever believe we’ll ever get any reliability from these bikes.
    I don’t believe ScooterHQ or DerbiAU will ever be able to fix the bikes or tell the truth about safety issues.
    I believe the fuel tank & idle problems will always be there. Not only this erratic & sporadic idle problem, but we’ve been continually spooked by fuel smells.

    ScooterHQ are telling everyone in another forum that the fuel tank thing was limited to a batch of tanks & that the problem’s been sorted, yet mine started leaking recently, & has often stunk of fuel.
  2. Re: Consumer Rights

    Legally you're probably totally in the right, and it looks like you've documented everything well.

    What do you want?

    Do you want 2 reliable, perfect Derbi scooters, or do you want your money back?

    To my mind scooters are about simple, reliable, cheap transport. Fall out of love with the Derbi's sexy headlights, piss 'em off and buy something japanese.
  3. Re: Consumer Rights

    Youll get a bunch of replies that basically say "F*ck em, go in there and demand your cash back, dont leave until you get it."

    Dont do that.

    Your already doing the right thing.
    Wait for it to play out, but make sure you are prepared when your day in court comes around. Have all supporting documents.

    The law is there to protect you, it also protects the dealership, but you have already been through the reasonable steps required.

    Your doing what you can do, as frustrating as it might be.
  4. Re: Consumer Rights

    Thanks for your replies guys.

    Yes, I don't want to see those Derbis ever again, & my money back so that I can start again with something else with a better reputation.

    I've decided to go public out of sheer frustration after learning the matter has literally gone south to the Gold Coast Office when it clearly also encompasses the Sunshine Coast.
    I feel as though the whole process through OOFT is gonna be a whitewash.


  5. Re: Consumer Rights

    kudos to you for trying to solve the problems with the dealers and service centres in such a calm and composite manner.
    Leaking fuel tanks....at a servo...!!! :|
    As said before, you have done a very good job documenting each and every action and it's response. This will definitely help to have the law in your side during a court case.

    Yes I think it would be better to ask for compensation for all the trouble you two went through, and look beyond Derbi as your next two wheelers.

    Wish you all the best.
  6. Have you told the dealer of your frustration with these lemons?

    What was their proposal to make it right?

    Have you asked to return them for a refund?
  7. The retailer is 100% liable. Thats who you have the contract with, not the importer or derbi.

    All of your correspondence should be with the retailer and it is his responsibility to either fix it or replace it.
    It is the dealers problem to recover his loss with the importer or manufacturer and has nothing to do with you at all.
    If he says "they wont give warranty on that" well thats the dealer's bad luck and he should still fix or replace it. That is Statutory Law..he nor anyone else can change it.

    For what it is worth I would contact the dealer again, followup with your complaint in writing to him giving him a nominated date to fix the problems.

    If he says it is out of warranty,,well that doesnt matter either.
    If you buy anything at all you should expect that item to last a particular amount of time or use. If that item fails prematurely the retailer is still obligated to fix it regardless of the warranty period offered by the manufacturer,

    if you buy a $10 watch and it lasts a year then you go buy a new watch, it you spend $600 on a watch and it fails after 4 years you can expect to have it fixed because it is expected that a watch costing that amount of money will last longer than 4 years. Again these are statutory laws and they are not widely known about or exercised.

    Talk to fair trading for advice, they are very helpfull
  8. Actually thats not 100% correct.
    In some cases it's a "manufacturors warranty" and the dealer is just the agent.
    The buck actually stops with the last person in the chain in Aus.

    You are however correct in that the dealer CANNOT avoid statutory warranties.
    I would lodge a complaint with Consumer Affairs, but only after trying to get the dealer to fix the problem.
  9. Correspondence with the dealer stopped when they couldn't get past the fact that they'd replaced the original 10AH battery with a cheapship Roadstar 11AH which did nothing for the on-going sporadic idle problems.

    I've had feedback from a guy who's replaced his battery out of his own pocket for a 12AH, & he said that it made a huuuuge difference for the better.
    If the ECU is compromised with low voltage at startup then this can be the cause of idle problems.
    I've proven for myself that it's not fuel related.

    12AH is recommended accorded to the Derbi manual, yet the bike was originally fitted with a 10AH no-name el-cheapo battery!

    All the dealer can say is "Bring it in, we'll have a look at it."
    Last time the idle problem was looked at the mech guy said, "Well I'm stumped: I don't know what's wrong!" & we left there with the idle problem not getting sorted. That's over 400K's round trip.

    I'm presently going through OOFT. The Brissy OOFT referred the matter to the Gold Coast OOFT which I thought was a buck passing move when the matter also covers the Sunshine Coast.
    Time will tell whether the OOFT has any balls.

    I've been advised by someone of my next "formal channel" if OOFT works out to be a whitewash.

    Failing that it's ACA & TT etc.

    The warranty is for 2 years, btw.

    Rob :)
  10. send a letter or email to Derbi . Tell them that you have a bike and cant read the info on the battery and would like to replace it.
    What size do I need?

    that should fix that. Then demand the dealer replace the battery with the correct one.. do they have an Australian distributor you can talk to about the dealer service?
  11. I already emailed the dealer & AU Rep, telling all of my problems & asked for a refund, to which there was no reply.
    That was the last communication.

    So, I guess they're not interested in negotiating.

    See how I go with OOFT, & I'll report my progress here.

    Cheers guys,
  12. A bit of an update.

    I had my Scooter Community post hacked & youtube links altered (by one of only 2 people with admin access) to animal p0rn links.
    The moderator has chosen to remove my Youtube links.

    I've been banned from that Scooterzone LOL.
    Reason given "Sorry Guest, you are banned from using this forum!
    Attack on how moderators choose to run forum"
    Which pretty pathetic since I'd posted thusly after re-posting my moderator-removed post.

    I don't really care about Scooterzone as it seems a bit dead, & definately dud. Scooter Community are yielding to commercial interests.

    Thankfully Netrider, Maxitag, Scooteroo, Bikes & Scooters, & Aussie Street Bikes are true forums "public speaking places".

    I've attempted to contact Derbi AU
    Nothing from them yet.

    No word yet from OFT.

    Rob :)
  13. A bit of an update on my progress.
    I've had a reply from OFT.
    My next move is the Small Claims Tribunal

    Hi Robert,

    I am the Investigator assigned to your complaint against Scooter HQ. I
    will be investigating your complaint to insure that Scooter HQ have
    complied with the Property Agents and Motor Dealers Act 2000 in regard
    to your complaint.

    Scooter HQ was visited on 1 December 2009 and your complaint was
    discussed with them. With regards to your request to receive a full
    refund, the Office of Fair Trading cannot direct a trader to provide
    compensation / redress. The Courts are the only organisation who are
    able to direct a trader / individual to provide compensation / redress.

    I attempted to conciliate an outcome on your behalf to obtain a full
    refund with the trader but the offer was rejected.

    Due to your matter being a warranty issue, the trader stated that the
    offer to return the scooters back to Scooter HQ to be repairs is still

    During the visit a breach of the Property Agents and Motor Dealers Act
    was detected with regards to licensing and enforcement action will be
    taken with respects to the breach.

    To obtain a refund you may consider lodging a claim with the Small
    Claims Tribunal, which can determine disputes in amounts up to
    $7,500.00. The Department cannot offer any guarantee as to whether such
    a claim, if lodged, would be successful. The Small Claims Tribunal can
    be contacted at:

    Small Claims Tribunal
    363 George Street
    Brisbane Qld 4000


    Rob :)
  14. if they have been trading in motor vehicles without a license, you have done a the scooter community a great service. Not to mention this will ultimately cost them more then the cost of a pair of scooters. The enforcement action will not be light going off previous experiences I've seen.

    I wouldn't really be concerned with the retailer, in Oz the liability rests with the manufacturer.. the trade practices act holds that to be the retailer till they confirm the distributor and so on down the chain until you reach the local import point or manufacturer. It's Derbi AU I would be chasing, this mob you've been dealing with seem like a bunch of muppets. It's been my experience with dealers that if you want real issues resolved you have to go to the head of the horse and not it's ass.

    Have you been in contact with ;

    Simon Wiseman
    ABN 79112317549

    (07) 3294 7700
    0405 495 599

    32 Lintrose Tce
    Karalee QLD 4306

    It shouldn't be too hard to get contact with Simon and see about getting it resolved. I can't see him wanting such bad press for the sake of a couple of lousy lemon scooters. Might pay to get them inspected for road worthy, see if they fail as well.. just more ammo in your belt.

    btw all that contact info is in the public domain (whitepages and a whois) so no ones privacy has been impinged with this post.
  15. Diomac (above) is pretty much on the money.
    (I did post earlier (page 1) that warranties go "up the chain" and that the distributor is liable in the end under the TPA.)
    I would write a polite, but firm letter to the distributor laying out your case and expressing your desire that: "this matter doesn't end up requiring action by the small claims tribunal to resolve"..... :-s

    By the way if the dealer is unregistered you have just cost him a WORLD of expensive pain.
  16. Thanks for your replies everyone.

    I have actually managed to have a telephone conversation with Simon Wiseman on 8.12.09.
    He accuses me of having some sort of vendetta against ScooterHQ.
    He laughed in my face when I said I can easily remove all my postings if we can sort this matter out.
    He said he wants to sit down & talk about it. *shrugs* Done all my talking in my emails.
    He accuses me of trying to ruin everybody's livelyhood.
    He said he's not going to pander to my demands.

    I've emailed him a proposition that could be contractually binding that I remove internet references etc etc.
    That I'll say the matter has been resolved....blah blah blah....good ol' Derbi etc etc: turn the matter around for them.
    The proposition was for them to buy back the bikes. "Now, It makes a lot of common good sense if we quell further angst, turn this matter around & bury it for good." & "I propose that a fair price be paid to buy back these bikes." I said in the email of 9.12.09.
    There's been no reply to that.

    On 6.11.09 I emailed to ScooterHQ, "Make me an offer to buy them back, and the problems will simply go away!"
    A non $$$-specific offer note.
    They never replied to that email that was CC'd to Simon Wiseman.

    It was after this that I decided to seek advice in the various forums.

    I think they've had plenty of chances.

    I'm going through the SCT at the moment.

    All the best guys,
    Rob :)
  17. I don't think you will have any troubles at the SCT since you have well documented the history, though I would get them independantly inspected as well by someone reputable. The fact the dealer was unlicened will hold sway as well. As that automatically screams dodgy.
  18. Thankyou for your reply.
    It's only from Scooter Community Forum that I've been jumped on as an exortionist & a blackmailer. Rather pharked! LOL!

    I sincerely thank yourself & everyone here who've helped me out with this matter.

    Xmas greeatings & fun etc etc to you all! :)
    I've got my xmas prezzie with some good rain happening out here, right now.

    Rob :)
  19. In 2002 I went to the Small Claims Tribunal regarding a brand new car I purchased. From what the Magistrate said to me, it is likely you'd hear the following:

    1. Your chances of getting a refund are nil from my experience. You received two working (at the time) scooters for the cash you handed over as per the contract. That's the exact explanation I was given.

    2. If there are any problems then you have to give the dealer or Derbi the right to repair the issue in a reasonable timeframe. If that's a repetitive process like it has been for you then you're required to bang your head up against a wall and keep repeating it.

    From what I understand about US consumer laws if there's a repeat of an issue under warranty then you have the right to brand new / replacement. Apparently laws like that won't work in Australia.

    3. If Derbi or anyone else asks for an inspection and has their mates write up that there's nothing wrong with the scooter then you too have to have your "expert report". I got hammered here when I went to Small Claims. The dealer got an "expert report" from one of their mates who works for them.

    Someone suggested you get a roadworthy report. You'd have to do that if you went to Small Claims.

    Apart from being told by a Magistrate that Derbi can repair your scooters, based on my experience, I don't know how you'd get a much different result than that. I wish you luck in getting a buyback if that's what you want.
  20. I thought a product had to be 'fit for purpose'?


    Of course this may be different for vehicles?