Around 120 Australians have died working on their own vehicles since 2000, with many hundreds more hospitalised, according to the ACCC.

According to data released by the ACCC, around 120 Australian have died because of DIY car maintenance accidents since 2000 with hundreds more injured in that time.

“Research shows most fatalities happen when the victims are working under a vehicle and using equipment incorrectly, with many of the fatalities involving the use of vehicle jacks. Most of the fatalities were men and involved the vehicle being lifted or supported in the wrong way. Most victims were aged 40 to 49,” the ACCC said.

While it seems like common-sense, the research would suggest many Australians are ignoring the most basic car maintenance safety practices. The ACCC has released the following tips and here at Practical Motoring we wholeheartedly support them. We’re big fans of working on your own vehicle but only when it’s done safely…if in doubt don’t and seek professional advice.

Safety tips

  • Never get under a car that is only supported by a jack.
  • When working under your car, use a trolley jack to lift the car before lowering it onto vehicle support stands. Use vehicle support stands on a hard surface before working under your car.
  • Never place any part of your body under a vehicle unless it is sitting securely on support stands or ramps.
  • Never allow a person or pet to remain in the vehicle while it is being jacked.
  • Never exceed the weight capacity of the jack.
  • Always perform vehicle maintenance on steady ground, not on sand or a sloped surface.
  • Never use makeshift support stands such as blocks of wood or bricks.
  • Apply the handbrake in accordance with safety instructions.
  • Always ‘chock’ the wheels on a raised vehicle.
  • Follow product instructions and report faulty products.

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