A recalled Samsung washing machine that was due to be repaired has caught fire in a home in Lake Macquarie, New South Wales. Consumer group Choice has reacted saying consumers should demand a full refund on the faulty machines.
No one was injured in the most recent incident, as the family of four managed to get out of the house after the fire broke out in their laundry around 6:30pm on Tuesday (23 June 2015).
The ABC reported, Fire and Rescue NSW Superintendent Tom Cooper said the owners had identified the machine as one of the models on the recall list, but were continuing to use it while waiting for repairs.
“Firefighters are urging people that if you do have one of these washing machines that’s subject to a recall notice, to stop using it, wait until a technician comes along and fixes it,” he said.
In April 2013 Samsung Electronics Australia recalled six top load washing machines, sold nationally between early 2010 and 28 February 2013. Since then 60,765 affected models have been serviced or replaced and around 83,000 washing machines are yet to be serviced or replaced. Samsung recently invested in advertising to raise consumer awareness of the recall.
Consumer group Choice has responded to news of the latest fire, telling customers they should demand a full refund, not just a repair. Choice claims there has been 196 confirmed incidents with the recalled machines, 18 of those occurred after machines “had apparently been repaired.”
“If you have a potentially faulty Samsung washing machine it is time to act to protect your family,” said Choice head of media Tom Godfrey.
“We are encouraging consumers with a faulty machine to seek a full refund. We are not confident that the repairs Samsung is making are fixing the problem.
“Under Australian Consumer Law consumers have to power to seek a full refund for products that have major failures such as these Samsung top loaders.
“It is concerning to think that more than 144,000 Samsung machines are affected, with the vast majority still in people’s homes.
“The fact is, you do not want one of these dodgy Samsung washing machines in your home,” he said.
Samsung urges consumers who may be impacted by the recall to visit its dedicated website www.samsung.com/au/washingmachinerecall or call its dedicated customer service line Toll-Free product safety hotline on 1800 239 655.
The following models were manufactured from 2010 to 2013: