Most consumer complaints against car service centres

Muscat, Jan 27 – A total of 2,511 complaints were received by Public Authority for Consumer Protection in 2017 and settlements to the tune of RO 205,026 were reached. Of these, complaints against car workshops topped the list with 443, followed by aluminium and carpentry sector (399), telephone services (288), electrical appliances (242), construction/ construction materials (189), services sector (150), travel/ tourism (128) and furniture and furnishings (65), among others. The department managed to recover RO 205,026 for a number of consumers by solving these complaints.

Meanwhile, a primary court issued two verdicts under the Consumer Protection Act, which included a conviction and a fine of RO 4,000. A dealer was asked to repair a complainant’s vehicle which had developed a defect. The case involved the overheating of the vehicle. The company inspected the repairs but refused to repair it under warranty. The PACP referred the case to the judicial authorities, which convicted the accused, fined him RO 2,000 and forced him to rectify the defect.

In the second case, PACP received a complaint from a consumer against a car dealership. He had purchased a 2016 model car but was surprised to find the year of manufacture was 2015. The tyres had a production date of the first month and the second week of 2015. The company agreed to replace the tyres with new ones, but delayed it. In the absence of an amicable solution between the parties, the case was referred to the judicial authorities, which imposed a fine of RO 2,000 on the accused.

Vinod Nair