Destroy My Jeep campaign gains traction with new laws
LEMON laws to protect consumers from faulty vehicles may be introduced in Queensland depending on recommendations to be handed to State Parliament at the end of next month.
Parliament's joint party Legal Affairs and Public Safety Committee yesterday heard submissions into the proposition from consumer advocates, legal professionals and members of peak automotive bodies.
Maroochydore IT professional Ashton Wood, whose social media campaign for justice after buying a new Jeep that turned out to be a dud attracted six million viewers globally, gave testimony to the committee.
He said it would assess the need for the laws and whether they should be state or federally based.
"We received a good hearing from a receptive committee," Mr Wood said.
"The committee will consider whether lemon laws should be a state or federal-based initiative, whether QCAT adjudication limits should be increased from $25,000 and if an independent expert in motor vehicles should be part of any mediation process."
Submissions were received from QUT law professor Steve Corones, Queensland Law Society manager Shane Budden, three consumer advocates including Mr Wood, Paul Holme of Legal Aid Queensland, Tony Webber, the chief executive of the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries, Kellie Dewar, the general manager of the Motor Traders Association, and Bruce McDonald, the CEO of the Australian Automotive Dealers Association.
Mr Wood destroyed his Jeep in a widely publicised act of frustration after trying for three years to have a range of problems he experienced with the $50,000 automobile addressed.
He won the support of Attorney General Yvette D'Ath who has taken a proposal for Australian-wide lemon laws to her interstate colleagues.
"As I stated to them on many occasions, there was nothing wrong with the money I gave them when I purchased my new vehicle, so why should I accept a vehicle that's had so much go wrong," he said of his negotiations with Fiat Chrysler Australia. "I also discovered there are many more stories similar to mine, so I sent each person who contacted me to the ACCC to lodge their complaint."