Whirlpool announced it is recalling up to 519,000 fire-risk washing machines sold under the Hotpoint and Indesit brands in the UK between October 2014 and February 2018.
Whirlpool has urged owners of Hotpoint and Indesit machines bought since 2014 to contact them immediately to check if their washing machine is one of the models affected.
You can check whether your washing machine is affected by calling Whirlpool on 0800 316 1442. The phone line will be open seven days a week.
If you do own an affected machine, we advise you to stop using it immediately, unplug it and register with Whirlpool for a free replacement machine or a free of charge in home repair of their existing appliance.
Sue Davies, Which? Strategic Policy Adviser, said:
“This safety alert will cause huge disruption for millions of people who will have no washing machine over Christmas, and following the tumble dryer scandal, leaves Whirlpool’s reputation as a company that can be trusted on product safety in tatters.
“People will rightly be asking what Whirlpool knew about these fire-risk machines and when, so there must now be a thorough investigation into this public safety issue. We know the company has a track record for appearing to put corporate reputation ahead of public safety in its disgraceful handling of the unsafe tumble dryer crisis.
“Customers will be hugely frustrated that this recall is not set to start for weeks and that they are not being offered refunds for machines from a brand they may no longer want to have in their homes.
“This ongoing saga with Whirlpool demonstrates once again that our product safety system is not fit for purpose and that the OPSS should be replaced with a new independent product safety regulator with real powers to finally hold companies to account over dangerous products.”