Published on July 12th, 2017 | by The GC Team1
Five fires a day caused by white goods in England
Electrical Safety First is calling on Government to provide free mandatory electrical checks for homes in tower blocks, following confirmation from the Metropolitan Police that a Hotpoint fridge freezer was the initial cause of the fire at Grenfell Tower in Kensington in June, which resulted in 80 people presumed dead.
The charity said that 1,873 fires were caused by domestic electrical white goods in England last year, the equivalent of over five fires per day.
The ESF has written to Margot James MP calling for a new policy which gives housing associations and local authorities legal responsibility for ensuring free mandatory electrical safety checks, to include fixed electrical installations and appliances per property.
Housing associations and local authorities must also keep a register of white goods contained and operating in the blocks, regardless of tenure of the property, and ensure tenants have registered their products.
The current policy of the UK Government states that there is an ‘expectation’ on landlords to keep electrical installations safe, which means that electrics and appliances contained within social rented properties could go unchecked for many years.
The ESF said it has put together initial costs for the operation of its suggested policy. These fall between £48m and £60m every five years.
The charity’s Technical Director Martyn Allen said tenants have the right to live in a home that has a safe electrical installation and appliances supplied by the landlord.
“We believe that, first and foremost, those living in densely populated areas like tower blocks must be protected. As a result, we would like to see Government implement mandatory safety checks as a matter of urgency.”
Electrical Safety First has launched a new microsite at whitegoodsafety.com to advise consumers on white goods safety. It has also published a list of the domestic appliances that are most likely to catch fire, based on a total of 2,562 domestic appliance fires in 2015/16 (see below).
- 19% washing machines (482)
- 18% tumble dryers (460)
- 15% electric cookers including oven (388)
- 9% Dishwashers (238)
- 8% Fridges/freezers (208)
- 5% Extractor fans (136)
- 5% Grill/Toasters (135)
- 4% Microwaves (109)
- 4% Other domestic appliances (92)
- 3% Washer dryer combos (66)