Following the news yesterday that vacuum cleaner brand Shark’s authorised distributor Brand Developers has officially instigated a product recall on two of its Navigator floorcare models, Appliance Retailer can today reveal that at least one person has suffered a serious injury from using a Shark vacuum cleaner carrying the fault.
Furthermore, Appliance Retailer has learned that Brand Developers has been aware of the fault for around three months, when the injury was brought to its attention late last year. Despite this, it wasn’t until 12 February 2015 that Brand Developers suspended sales of the NV350 and NV356 units, and not another five weeks — 16 March 2015 — that an official recall was enacted, communicating to consumers the potential for injury.
The fault of these vacuum cleaners is in the power cord, which can heat up to levels sufficiently hot enough to cause burns and/or electric shocks. Affected consumers are asked to send their appliance back to Brand Developers for a remedying service, which is completely free of charge and expected to take five business days to complete and return.
“The first incident appeared late last year,” a Brand Developers spokesperson told me. “It took some time to establish a trend in the incidents reported and then a thorough investigation was conducted to determine the cause.
“We reported the issue to regulators when there was a notifiable incident where someone required medical attention.
“Meanwhile, all direct TV advertising of the product was withdrawn in late January 2015 as a precaution. This was followed by all stock of the affected models being removed from sale on 12 February 2015.
“From the first notification to regulators in New Zealand and Australia we have worked as quickly and efficiently as possible to determine if a recall was needed, and to plan for a major repair program for those models to be recalled.
“Following investigation, and in consultation with regulators, we initiated a voluntary recall as a precautionary measure in the interests of consumer safety.”
The spokesperson was unable to provide further information as to the nature or seriousness of the injury suffered.
Consumers can register their details and make arrangements to send in their appliance for a replacement cord and plug at sharkclean.com.au or by calling the Shark hotline on 1800 722 222.
This author is on Twitter: @Patrickavenell