A new Statutory instrument (SI) for Electrical Safety in Rented accommodation ignores safety advice that Ministers and Lords should have received and reviewed.
For 7 years, we’ve been lobbying Government for changes in Guidance around the safety of the repair and reuse of recycled White Goods Appliances. Particularly when repairing, reusing and recycling them when and if they are recovered from being previously designated as Waste, and then come back into use in consumers’ homes.
We believe that in looking at this legislation, important safety information has been ignored that was submitted into the Consultation process, and not just for this Legislative Instrument. The particular aspect of concern is for Rented Accommodation where Landlords are operating Houses of Multiple Occupation. (HMO’s) In these premises the Landlord has to ensure that Household Appliances are Safe and this must be done by a Competent Person. The trouble is that there is no Competent Person scheme for White Goods repairs, nor one engaged in the process of recovering a Large Domestic Appliance back from being an item of Waste.
EEESafe has provided information and justifiable concerns to the consultation leading up to this SI, advocating that in order for an Appliance to be safe, particularly if it was a Used Appliance or one that has been repaired, there are still safety risks which this consultation and others appear to be ignoring. We are actually safer than a British Standard when comparing it with Large Domestic Appliances.
“The combination of electrical components, high wattage heating elements, motors and friction means tumble dryers and washing machines can catch fire in various ways.” IFIC
The estimated Average cost of a domestic fire in England is £44k and £1.6M if there is a fatality from a fire. Fire Research Report
There are 60 Fires a week caused by Appliances WHICH Report
A Pat Test itself does not mean an Appliance is safe to use EEESafe Explains
UK Gov agrees skills of an Electrician are not directly transferable to White Goods Repairs
20 MPS citing Grenfell (where an appliance is believed to have caused the fire) are misguided on what a PAT Test does. See this Early Day Motion
Whilst this SI is about Electrical Safety in rented accommodation and concerns the Electrical Installations, HMO’s are also mandated to ensure White Goods Appliances are safe. We spoke to the Office for Product Safety and Standards, responsible for consumer product safety about this, and their comments are “it’s not our brief”. If the Housing and Business Ministers cannot work together on this, where there should be a concern for every household, then what hope and confidence can UK citizens have in their Elected Members of Parliament.
So it appears to us now that MPS and LORDS have not been provided with the evidence and dangers for tenants, because our technical evidence and questions, remained unanswered. Therefore passing this legislation, without correctly dealing with this at Consultation Stage, is clearly a failure of due process, because important safety information has been withheld or mistakenly missed and unaddressed. We firmly believe that a Competent Person in White Goods Repair & Refurbishment is required to conduct this work, where Appliances are in Rented or any accommodation.
Is it because the Manufacturers and British Standards Institute are putting Profit before Safety?
We need debate and representation on this Standard Instrument laid before Parliament now, if we’re learning any lessons from Grenfell. The legislation has been passed through some of it’s processes, but is due to come back to the House of Commons for final sign off. Is there an MP out there who cares to draw these matters to the House of Commons when this reaches it’s final stage in the process?
EEESafe are looking to install Safer and Qualified Repair Technicians into your Local Community and living in your neighbourhood. They will represent an Independent safer Repair/Reuse and Refurbishment standard, Clearly there are many who will not trust manufacturers given the Recall issues we’ve seen over the last few years. This is why we have our own (& the 1st) independent Appliance Safety Register, that competes with the one run by the Manufacturers Trade Association. The EEESafe standard actively promotes and offers solutions, to prevent Recalls being sold online, to increase cost effective repair and reuse, as well as evidence their engagement in tackling Climate Change and Poverty & Debt.