Electrical Safety First offers product recall advice

26 September 2014

Product Recall

Advice that could save lives: Electrical Safety First issues guidance to protect against dangers of faulty electrical goods.

The UK’s leading electrical safety charity is today issuing guidance designed to protect consumers against faulty electrical products that may unknowingly be in their homes. Electrical Safety First is warning that these items, some of which may already be subject to a recall unbeknownst to the owner, are potentially dangerous, as demonstrated by the tragic death of Santosh Benjamin-Muthiah, who was killed in a fire caused by a faulty fridge-freezer in 2010.

Whilst the inquest into the incident concludes later this week, Electrical Safety First is urging consumers to do the following in order to stay safe:

  • Always register electrical products using the card provided or online. Whilst many fear that this is simply for marketing purposes, the details provided are the best means of contact that the manufacturer has in the event of a product recall.
  • Stop using a product immediately and contact the manufacturer if any of the following signs occur: strange noises, overheating or smoke.
  • Use Electrical Safety First’s product recall checker at http://www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk/recall  in order to ensure that any electrical products you own have not been recalled. Periodically re-check the website for updates.

On this guidance and the inquest into Santosh Benjamin-Muthiah’s death, Martyn Allen, Head of Technical at Electrical Safety First said:

“Faulty electrical products pose a real threat to consumers, their families and their properties but following our simple guidance can significantly help to reduce the risks.

However, the greatest onus for keeping the public safe from these items has to lie with manufacturers and authorities. The recall system in its current state is simply not working; recalls currently have a success rate as low as 10-20% and consumers are confused about how to deal with faulty items.  

It is our hope that following this inquest, authorities and manufacturers continue to work more closely together and with us to improve the system. Focus has to be on reviewing industry guidance, improving traceability of products and initiating better data sharing in particular. These steps, coupled with consumers following our advice, will help ensure that tragedies like the death of Santosh Benjamin-Muthiah do not happen again”.


Editor’s notes:

Electrical Safety First is a Charity dedicated to reducing deaths, injury and damage caused by electricity. For more information please visit www.electricalsafetyfirst.org.uk

Statistics taken from Electrical Safety First’s report on Appliance Safety

For more information on this press release please contact:

Ben Stokes, Media Relations Executive at Electrical Safety First

t: 020 3463 5129 e: ben.stokes@electriclasafetyfirst.org.uk