Virgin Home Insurance - Cutting down on cost, not cover

Virgin Home Insurance - Cutting down on cost, not cover

500,000 fridges pose fire risk

06/07/2011

500,000 fridges pose fire risk

Homeowners and businesses have been warned of the potential fire risks posed by up to 500,000 fridge freezers across the country, it has been revealed.

The London Fire Brigade issued the warning after a blaze in the capital last week caused by a faulty appliance.

It was initially thought that the fire was caused by a lightning strike, but it was later found to be the result of a malfunctioning Beko fridge.

The recent fire highlights the danger faced by thousands of homeowners and businesses in the UK, the brigade said in a statement.

It should also remind property owners to double check their appliances and home insurance policies immediately.

The faulty appliances are believed to have caused around 20 fires in London alone over the past three years, with 15 people injured and one killed.

Steve Turek, assistant commissioner for fire safety regulation, said: "Expert fire investigators have had to work for a long time to confidently establish these faulty fridge freezers as the cause of a number of serious fires. Having established this link, we have worked closely with Beko to ensure the public is kept safe."

The problem occurs when water gets into the defrost timer switch in the fridge freezer, which can lead to an electrical malfunction resulting in plastic components and other highly flammable insulation inside the appliance catching fire.

Copyright © Press Association 2011

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