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KBzine: the original kitchen and bathroom industry e-newssince 2002
28th January 2021


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Welcome to the


Sadly, our industry has made it into the press again this week, in a way that most of us wish it hadn't. The news that there are apparently some 1million tumble dryers in our nation's homes that pose a fire risk, has made many of us wonder whether our own appliances are safe.

The London Fire Brigade warned on Tuesday, when the issue was discussed in Parliament, that the Government must act now on white goods' safety. Giving evidence on behalf of the National Fire Chief's Council (NFCC) to the Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy Select Committee which was holding a one-off session on the safety of electrical goods and the UK's product safety and recall systems, head of fire Investigation Charlie Pugsley said that since nearly one fire a day in London involves white goods, "Consumers need to be given a fighting chance and know exactly what the risks are".

The LFB's 'Total Recalls' initiative has been campaigning for the last two years for Government and manufacturers to implement several changes to make all white goods safer. These include: * A single Government backed product recall data base * Recalls notices to be better publicised to reduce confusion * Greater regulation of second hand appliances * Changes to the way that fridges and freezers are manufactured * All appliances to be marked with a model and serial number * The inclusion of sleeping as a factor in risk assessments

Charlie warned that despite the campaigning and independent and BEIS departmental working group reviews plus Coroners' recommendations: "We still don't have the outcomes that will help keep consumers safe" and that something must be done immediately. He also highlighted the Brigade's call for improved manufacturing standards for fridge freezers adding: "The key issue is that a fridge freezer is not something you can turn off when you go to bed. If something is going to catch fire, just watching it doesn't mean you're going to be safe."

Also giving evidence were Pete Moorey of Which?; Martyn Allen of Electrical Safety First; Sian Lewis of the Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Appliances; Leon Livermore of the Chartered Trading Standards Institute and Ian Moverley, communications director, Hotpoint, Whirlpool. When people's lives are at stake we need to work together to put things right. It will be interesting to see what changes come as a result of Tuesday's session, since whatever they are, they will affect us all.



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Jan Hobbs



3rd November 2017

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