THE Consumer Council of Fiji has called on the public to be wary of buying second-hand, flood-affected vehicles.
This warning comes in the wake of the floods that recently affected the Western and Central divisions.
"Consumers must be mindful that once a vehicle is fully submerged in the water or even with water level up to the dashboard level, all electrical wires will be affected and the vehicle will malfunction," said council chief executive Premila Kumar. She said the sale of such vehicles could lead to tragic incidents for the drivers if the engines suddenly stopped or quit.
"Despite this fact, some smart owners will try to get rid of these vehicles by selling it as road worthy," she said.
Mrs Kumar called on those selling second-hand vehicles to disclose to the buyers that the vehicle is flood damaged and whether it is road worthy or being sold for spare parts only. "Consumers however should not be satisfied with the sellers words only but take proactive action themselves," said Mrs Kumar.
She said it was important for customers to have any second hand flood vehicle affected checked by a qualified mechanic before purchase.
"It is also advisable to take your vehicle to LTA for a supplementary check." She also called for all vehicle buyers to demand for pre-disclosures when buying second hand vehicles.
"The pre-disclosure would include valuable information such as, particulars of goods, vehicle registration number, new or old, address where goods will be kept, etc."