The danger of counterfeit car parts and problem-solving techniques

    Inside the car

    Annually about 36 000 lethal accidents and 1.5 million cases of injuries occur due to low-quality car parts. As a rule, counterfeit parts, do not meet any safety requirements and do not meet any requirements specification of the original equipment manufacturers. Even seemingly insignificant car components can cause a lot of problems unless they are produced or approved by an official manufacturer.

    Counterfeit airbags which were created to slow down the passengers’ movement and protect them in case of collision in multiple cases do not work at all or are not activated fast enough.

    Spark plugs, oil, and air filters may result in engine breakdown and create a fire risk if they are counterfeit.

    Counterfeit electric components, including the lights, may lead to an electrical short circuit and fire.

    The weels are created to handle the speed and bad road surface. However, the fake parts do not have the needed level of adhesion to the road surface, which very often leads to emergencies.

    Not original windshields may shatter or displace, injure or fail to provide any protective barrier for passengers.

    A solution to the problem

    The problem of counterfeit distribution in this industry affects the entire world market. Thus, many countries have taken some measures to combat counterfeit car parts both in the industry itself and on the state levels. In the USA the manufacturers, represented by the Automotive Anti-Counterfeiting Council (A2C2), adopted the law on anti-counterfeiting airbags. In 2018, A2C2 company in cooperation with Interpol issued its first “orange notification” related to law enforcement cars. This notification is a warning about an imminent threat to public safety from counterfeit car parts.

    Meanwhile, the British government has recently joined forces with the representatives of the car industry and marketplaces to raise consumer awareness of the dangers of counterfeit auto parts with the help of modern technologies.

    World marketplaces, such as Amazon and eBay issued the guideline on how to purchase the car parts. Alibaba introduced a policy on auto parts and announced a ban on the placement of airbags and related components on their platforms.

    In October 2018 the Emirates Authority for Standardization and Metrology (ESMA) in the UAE has implemented the system which guarantees that car parts without the quality mark of ESMA cannot get to the UAE market. Also within the framework of this system, a database with complete information on all spare parts produced or imported into the country will be developed.

    The consequences of a wrong choice

    Any action or decision adopted has its consequences. However, if you choose a fake purse it will result only in wasted money, and if you choose cheaper but untested car parts, your risk of having serious injuries or endanger other people are a lot higher. What are the consequences and who bears the responsibility for the spread of counterfeit products?

    As usual, for the consumers, it’s a risk for health and the environment, lack of warranty obligations, and rights to compensation for damage. The increase of counterfeit may result in loss of trust, loss of brand value and sales, huge legal or judicial costs, and loss of jobs for the manufacturers’ side.

    Unfortunately, the number of counterfeit being purchased is constantly growing. The number of consumers who were deceived and bought fake parts, which are not covered by the systems of control and compensation for damage increases every day. The tendency, mildly speaking, is unhealthy and suggests significant risks for the safety of others and consumers. But it also requires governments and businesses to intensify their efforts and targeted programs to inform and protect consumers.

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