Reece, a plumbing supplier with 180 locations throughout Australia, launched its "Don't Risk It ... Use A Licensed Plumber" campaign in 1997. The message now runs in everything from newspaper ads and billboards to T-shirts and bumper stickers.
The company's latest research shows the dire consequences that can befall the DIY crowd. According to the Victoria coroner's office, 43 people died and more than 5,400 people required a trip to the emergency room as a result of handyman accidents. (Victoria is one of Australia's six states.)
While some handymen are less likely to tinker with the gas line, they are more adventurous when it comes to water, says Peter Wilson, Reece's marketing manager. As a result, the company has recently stepped-up its "Don't Risk It" campaign.
"Many people don't realize the dangers of undertaking a plumbing job -- the threat of water contamination and the real risks associated with mixing power and water," Wilson added.