A children’s bicycle missing three required safety components was withdrawn from sale by Apollo Bicycle Co Pty Ltd following concerns raised by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission.
More than 450 Radius Racer X Al 12" children’s bicycles supplied by Apollo did not have a hand brake, a front white reflector or red rear reflector as required under the mandatory product safety standard for pedal bicycles AS/AZS 1927:1998 Pedal Bicycles - Safety Requirements.
ACCC acting chairman Peter Kell said bikes without appropriate brakes or ways of catching the attention of other road users place the rider in a dangerous situation.
Apollo has admitted that by supplying the Radius Racer X Al 12" bicycle without those components it breached section 65C of the Trade Practices Act 1974.
When the issue was brought to the attention of Apollo immediate action was taken to remove the product from sale nationally. Apollo has since provided the ACCC with court enforceable undertakings that it will:
- not supply any bicycles to which the mandatory standard applies unless the bicycles comply with the standard
- supply the missing components to retailers of the Radius Racer X Al 12" bicycle and advise them to contact customers to arrange to have the missing components fitted
- cause information notices to be displayed at retail outlets and on the website www.apollobikes.com
- conduct an audit to indentify any products which do not comply with the relevant mandatory standards, and
- develop and implement a trade practices compliance program.
"The ACCC will continue to take strong enforcement action on product safety issues, particularly where the safety of children is involved," Mr Kell said.
"Importers, distributors and retailers of goods covered by a mandatory standard must ensure the products comply with that standard in order to avoid placing consumers at risk of injury."
The safety standard for bicycles, which has been in place since the 1970s, requires that children’s bikes over a certain size have both back pedal and front brakes so a child can operate them safely. A report in the late 1990s showed that more than 30 per cent of bike related injuries were attributed to the incorrect application of brakes.
Previous studies have also highlighted the importance of cyclist visibility to other road users. The mandatory safety standard which includes requirements for front and rear reflectors was developed in response to this.
According to a 2009 report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare on land transport accidents during 2006-2007, a total of 4403 pedal cyclists aged between 5-17 years were seriously injured in accidents, representing 39 per cent of all seriously injured children in this age group.
"While many accidents are user related, the standard ensures safe bikes are available to Australian consumers. The ACCC puts high priority on enforcing product safety and information standards because non-compliance increases the potential for injuries occurring," Mr Kell said.
In this case the Apollo product was detected by the ACCC during a national product safety survey focussing on children’s bicycles and toys. The ACCC will continue to conduct random retail surveys throughout Australia to detect non-compliant products.
Mr Brent Rebecca, Media, (02) 6243 1317 or 0408 995 408
Release # NR 022/10
Infocentre 1300 302 502