By Clair Morton
Published: Monday, January 8, 2018
If in doubt, don’t get under your car.
That’s the RAA’s message to DIY mechanics, following the release of statistics showing that, on average, five people are killed while working under vehicles each year.
According to the ACCC, there were 72 fatalities nationally from January 2000 to June 2014.
A further 160 injuries are associated with jacks each year, with injuries ranging from amputation to fractures and crush injuries. Most involved products such as vehicle jacks, trolley jacks, portable ramps for vehicles and vehicle support stands.
In light of this, the RAA, Consumer and Business Services and the SA Metropolitan Fire Service are urging people to use jacks safely, if at all.
RAA Technical Advisory Services manager Andrew Clark said people thinking about working under cars should consider the risks of serious risks of injury or worse.
‘It may be that the work should be left to those qualified and experienced where there is good awareness of safety procedures,’ he said.
‘These include jack and safety stand load limits, correct jack positioning and the correct use and placement of safety stands.
‘Don’t risk it, leave this to someone qualified and experienced.’
Visit the Product Safety Australia website, for information on mandatory standards, guidance on using products safely, educational material and product recalls.
- Check that your jack meets mandatory standards
- Choose the right jack for the right job
- Never substitute a jack for unsuitable alternatives such as bricks or timber blocks
- Follow the correct operating instructions
- Never exceed the weight capacity of the jack
- Never place any part of your body under a car that is only supported by a jack until it is sitting on support stands.