In this edition: Lots about safety and recalls; plus ACCC's product safety priorities
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Kettles with handles that fall off (and other faults)
By Gail Greatorex

All electrical appliances in Australia have to pass requirements for electrical safety. Those regulations include other aspects of an appliance, but many kettle recalls have been for non-electrical aspects.

The recent Kitchen Aid Electric Kettle recall is just the latest of several on the Product Safety Australia Recalls listing.

Of the 10 recalls listed for electric kettles, only 3 relate to electrical hazards. The other faults are for something wrong with the body of the kettle itself. These were:

  • One case of the plastic viewer window shattering into the kettle
  • One case of lead leaching inside the kettle
  • Five cases of handles detaching

Read more

How not to handle a product fault - Thermomix
by Gail Greatorex

Record fines for breaching the product safety laws have been ordered in the Federal Court. Findings showed Thermomix’s clear disregard for consumer safety and the law. Well done to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission for taking this enforcement action.

Thermomix In Australia Pty Ltd has been ordered to pay more than $4.6 million for breaching not one, or two, but three different parts of the Australian Consumer Law.

ACCC calls for a general safety provision
by Gail Greatorex

In a recent speech ACCC Chairman Rod Sims expressed strong support for a GSP. He drew comparisons with other, now established parts of the consumer law.

This year for the first time the ACCC also made a detailed statement of its priorities for product safety. It says this will continue in future years. The priority statement details the ACCC’s approach to risk assessment and management, which is helpful information to businesses and other stakeholders.

Read more 

CHOICE calling for recall reform

With big recall issues much in the news, CHOICE is calling for reform of recall laws. Citing Samsung washing machines, the Thermomix, Takata airbags and more, they have set up a petition to call on government to ramp up consumer protection against major product faults. 
The Patties experience with frozen berries shows how much a recall can cost 

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