Consumers underestimate appliance recall dangers

21 Nov, 14

Electrical Safety First found 2 million have ignored appliance safety recalls

Consumers who underestimate the risks posed by recalled appliances, result in low rates of returns. This is despite 4million appliances having been recalled by manufacturers over the past four years, according to Electrical Safety First.

Since 2011, 288 electrical appliances have been recalled including seven models of fridge and four types of washing machines. Yet Electrical Safety First states only 10-20% of recalled appliances are ever returned or repaired.

Electrical Safety First’s research was announced at its Product Safety Conference hosted by the Charity. The investigation found that many people associated recalls with ‘annoying faults rather than safety, with 2 million adults admitting to ignoring a recall notice despite reported faults including risk of fire or electric shock.

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“Our research discovered that 77% of people would be more likely to respond if they understood the potential dangers from a recalled product”, explained Phil Buckle, Director General of Electrical Safety First. And its research showed people were more likely to act on the recall if it was for a major domestic appliance, rather than small domestic appliances.

Phil Buckle commented: “We also found that concerns regarding how personal information could be used are a major barrier to people registering their new products. The majority – 61% of those surveyed – said they would be more likely to register if they knew their information would not be used for marketing purposes.”

He added: “Our Product Safety Conference is designed to create a forum for manufacturers, retailers and other key stakeholders, including consumer protection organisations and government, to establish ways of improving product safety and consumer protection. But we are also calling on consumers to register their products and ‘opt out’ of receiving marketing information, if this concerns them.”