Australia gets tough on Choppers - BikeBiz

Australia gets tough on Choppers

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has ordered a recall of three models of 3G's Chopper's thanks to breaches of Australian safety standards. 3G's Gary Silva responds to BikeBiz.com. David Priestley, editor of Oz mag Bicycle Industry News, believes the recall could be the start of an official backlash against non-standard bicycles.
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"This will apply to a whole range of bicycles, including some of the majors I would imagine," Priestley told BikeBiz.com.

Graeme Samuel, the chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, said:

“The ACCC conducted a market survey of retro style bicycles, sold under a variety of names including chopper, cruiser, and low-rider and found bicycles which breach the mandatory safety standard and are potentially dangerous.

"Retailers and wholesalers have an absolute responsibility to ensure that any bicycle sold meets the mandatory safety standard. Breaches found include: the absence of front brakes, the handlebar exceeding allowable width, the height between seat and handlebar exceeding allowable depth, the length of the frame causing uneven and dangerous distribution between front and back wheels and potential instability."

The ACCC raised concerns with one company, Classic Bicycles Pty Ltd, the importer of Gary Silva's 3G bicycles, and classic recalled the bikes for IBDs to fit new handlebars.

Samuel said:

“While there have been no associated incidents or injuries reported, the ACCC takes the view that all bicycles which do not meet the requirement of the safety standard in relation to height and width of the handlebar should not be sold. The ACCC has met with representatives of Retail Cycle Traders Australia and Bicycle Industry Australia to discuss these bikes. Both organisations have agreed to reinforce with their members the need to comply with the mandatory standard."

Gary Silva, the US bike builder, said he was happy for Classic to fit new, smaller handlebars to the recalled bikes and agrees with ACCC that some Choppers are unsafe to ride. But not 3G Choppers. To prove this he emailed a Quicktime movie of two of his company's bike screaming down a road. Silva was riding one of the bikes.

"Our bikes are functional at any speed, from your regular cruising to what we call 'hauling ass. 65 mph, no hands.' I would not try this on a regular cruiser," said Silva.

"I think that the ACCC talks sense. I have seen in the market some stupid bars that make the bike real dangerous. Our handlebars and seat works together so you can get a good fit. Like in any good bike you should have a slight bend on your arms and slight bend in your legs when you are pedaling. If you fellow those rules you will have a good fit on our chopper bikes."

http://www.3gbikes.com/2005

http://www.bicycleindustrynews.com

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