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Tuesday, 22 January, 2002, 12:20 GMT
Garages miss safety traps
Tyre check
Garages failed to spot a dangerous spare tyre in a test
An undercover survey has produced a catalogue of safety failures by garages.

Trading standards officers planted 18 faults on cars that were put in for services at six garages in Swindon, Wiltshire.

None of them spotted all the faults - and the worst missed a dozen of them.

Now the survey may be repeated nationally.

The faults included low brake fluid levels and deflated spare tyres.

Essentially the customer is in a position of trust.

Phil Thomas, trading standards officer
Phil Thomas, of Swindon's trading standards department, said: "None of them managed to check up on all 18 faults and the best still missed five, on what is supposed to be a full service.

"None of them picked up faulty lights and most missed the spare tyre being deflated.

"It's not just a question of value for money - it has safety implications as well."

He said car owners should make sure exactly what a service would cover.

"Essentially the customer is in a position of trust.

"They have got to rely on the garage to do the work that they expect and in most cases there's little chance of them checking up on the garage."

Click here to go to BBC Wiltshire
See also:

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The soaring cost of running a car
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Q&A: Buying a new car
16 Feb 01 | UK
Vintage car passes MoT
01 Sep 00 | Business
Car price law in force
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