Russel Hobbs Irons Recalled, Company Knew About Buring Problem For 18 Months But Failed To Warn Customers

Written by David Richards     07/12/2014 | 20:30 | Category: LAUNDRY

Serious questions are being asked of Spectrum Brands the maker of Russell Hobbs appliances after the BBC revealed that for 18 months the Company had failed to reveal a fault with their irons that had resulted in owners being seriously burnt, their appliances are sold in Australia.

Russel Hobbs Irons Recalled, Company Knew About Buring Problem For 18 Months But Failed To Warn Customers
Now and only after the BBC exposed the Company, is Spectrum Brands whose products are sold in Australia moving to withdraw their Steam Glide ovens which are sold at The Good Guys from sale?  

Russell Hobbs has withdrawn more 14 models of irons after customers reported them bursting into flames in their hands.

Anyone using a Russell Hobbs iron have been warned to stop using their iron immediately.

In a statement on its website, Russell Hobbs said that there is a "real risk that the flex may fail."

The move to recall was only made after the brand was taking a battering on Facebook after a BBC Watchdog show revealed the extent of the problem.  

Rebecca Scurr wrote: "Just want to warn people of potential danger my husband was ironing today when it caught fire and burnt him. Lucky he quickly threw it to the floor (damaging our kitchen floor) could have been a lot worse".

Another user wrote: "Today when using the Russel Hobbs Steam Glide iron it suddenly sparked and has burnt my hand badly (...) the electrical burn is incredibly painful and I would not want anyone else to go through this."

Jonathan Wells told the BBC's Watchdog: "I realised from the pain in my hand that came straight after it that the iron had caught fire somehow and burned my hand. The pain was getting so bad I had to go into the kitchen and run it under the cold tap for probably about an hour."

Tim Wright, the vice-president of Spectrum Brands, Russell Hobbs's parent company, admitted the firm discovered the problem 18 months ago, and apologised to all those who had been hurt.

Mr Wright said: "The first thing I would like to do is apologise to all the people who have been individually harmed. Clearly that was not our intention."

Questioned about the delay in recalling the faulty products, he said: "We did actually discover it over a year ago as you say".

The British Company added "We recognised that we had a flex in our irons which is actually UK and European compliant, but in certain special occasions was causing an issue. So we amended that then, we worked with trading standards and we have been monitoring the situation."

Felicity Lee, a customer, wrote on the Facebook page: "Shocked seeing this on Watchdog as this happened to me around two months ago. Burnt all my hand just thought maybe needed to replace iron never thought about contacting Russell hobs (sic)."

Russell Hobbs apologised to customers for any inconvenience caused and are offering a replacement or refund.

 Those irons affected are model number: 18651, 18742, 19220, 19221, 18743, 19840, 18720, 15081, 19222, 19400, 20260, 18741, 20280, 20550-10, and 20560-10.

The model number is located on a label the underside of the heel of the iron. It is not known how many of these irons have been shipped to Australia or New Zealand.

SmartHouse has been unable to contact Spectrum Brands or their PR Company Maxted Thomas. 

Russell Hobbs say customers with one of these models should also check the batch code, which is written at the bottom of the label. It stated: "If it starts with 045 through to 365 and ends with 12 or starts with 001 through to 195 and ends with 13, then you have an affected iron."