Cllr Simon Blackburn, Chair of the Local Government Association’s Safer and Stronger Communities Board, responds to to research by Which? on the increasing number of appliances that cause fires in homes and which cannot be identified.
“Councils are clear that manufacturers have the lead responsibility to consumers to make sure that their products are safe, and to take steps to address this where faults are identified. Part of this process must involve faulty appliances being able to be identified where they have caused fires.
“While manufacturers have primary responsibility, the Government framework for product safety must support this as much as possible.
“Councils support the Office for Product Safety and Standards, which provides much-needed central capacity to help local trading standards teams on product safety issues, and we would support this issue being included in its new strategy. Alongside that, it’s essential that consumers have access to as much information as possible, and we would urge the Office to create an easily accessible, comprehensive database of recalled products. This would enable people to get as full a picture as possible about the safety of the products they are buying, and should be supported by all manufacturers.
“The consequences of faulty appliances catching fire are devastating, with property damaged and in some cases, lives lost. Council trading standards teams will work closely with the Office for Product Safety and Standards to keep people safe.”