Committee questions Whirlpool and consumer safety groups
28 June 2019
On Tuesday morning, the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee holds a follow-up session for its safety of electrical goods inquiry, focusing on Whirlpool and questioning the effectiveness of the company's response to ongoing safety concerns about its tumble-dryers.
Whirlpool have committed to facing questions from the Committee on Tuesday. The Committee will question Whirlpool and will also hear from a panel of witnesses including Martyn Allen, Technical Director, Electrical Safety First, Charlie Pugsley, Deputy Assistant Commissioner, London Fire Brigade, and Sue Davies, Strategic Policy Adviser, Which?
In this session, the Committee are likely to examine issues around the safety of the modification to Whirlpool tumble-dryers, steps to make unmodified machines safe, Whirlpool's approach to product safety, and issues around product registration.
Background on the BEIS Committee's work on safety concerns around Whirlpool tumble-dryers
In May 2018, Rachel Reeves MP, Chair of the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee, called for the Government's Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) to consider a full recall of defective Whirlpool machines, following a series of potentially deadly safety issues with its tumble-dryers. Rachel Reeves wrote to Andrew Griffiths, then Minister for Small Business, Consumers and Corporate Responsibility, to press the Minister on what actions the Government and OPSS were taking to ensure Whirlpool were making defective and modified tumble-dryers safe.
This was only the latest in a series of correspondence and activity from the BEIS Committee on this issue which followed on from the BEIS Committee's earlier report on the safety of electrical goods in the UK, published on 16 January 2018. The report is available here.
Tuesday 2nd July, Wilson Room, Portcullis House
- Martyn Allen, Technical Director, Electrical Safety First,
- Charlie Pugsley, Deputy Assistant Commissioner, London Fire Brigade,
- Sue Davies, Strategic Policy Adviser, Which?
- Jemma Spurr
- Jeff Noel, Corporate Vice President, Communications and Public Affairs, Whirlpool Corporation
- Michael Farrington, Verification and Validation Leader for Dryers, Vertical Axis Washers, and Commercial Laundry, Whirlpool Corporation