Appliances & The Risks Of Fire

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According to recently published figures by the Association Of British Insurers, the cost to Insurance companies through claims over the last 5 years in London alone as a result of fire damage caused by faulty appliances exceeds £120m. This is on a par with some Hurricanes and major events that we see nationalised in the media. The risk of fire from an appliance in the home or business has risen significantly over the last decade.

The likely cause of failures in these appliances may be attributed to low grade individual component parts which have been manufactured to meet the bare minimum of standards in order to minimise cost. The London fire Brigade estimates that on average each fire has caused around £61,000 of Insurance Claim Smoke & Fire Damage to each of the properties that have been affected. Many other parts of the country have yet to show any statistics to date, but this trend is likely to be mirrored throughout the UK and there have been calls for major reform into the appliance regulation industry following the fire at Grenfall in 2017. The campaign which followed this fire was as a result of a tumble drier fire that set the individual flat ablaze which then spread to insulation on the exterior of the building. The entire tower block became an inferno in which dozens of lives were lost. Over 200 firefighters were involved in the attempts to extinguish the fire, leaving many traumatised with the aftermath of the events witnessed.

Appliances, and in particular white goods, are defined as the main cause of fire in properties at least once per day in the UK. The London Fire Brigade have publicly named some of the manufacturers and pleaded with them to issue safety warnings on all ranges that are known to pose a risk of starting a fire, and to encourage engineers to visit and rectify or to recall any faulty appliances as soon as possible to prevent further fires. If you plan to purchase new appliances, and in particular white goods, google to research if there are any warnings as to their history of starting fires before you commit to the order. Search online for your own appliances or directly with the manufacturers to ask about fire safety warnings associated with the unit. Remember if you are leaving dishwashers or tumble driers unattended keep a close eye on them. If you are leaving the property, turn them off at the socket to prevent needing some Insurance claim help. If are unlucky enough to be the subject of a fire as a result of an appliance, you may be wise to seek the help of an Insurance Loss Assessor. Ideally call one before your Insurance company arrives to help with the Claim Management. Fire & Smoke damage can be devastating.