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Warning against use of dodgy cables as brands are recalled

Certain brands of cables have been recalled due to safety fears.
Certain brands of cables have been recalled due to safety fears.

LASER Electrical is pleading for consumers to be cautious when buying electrical products.

An alarming number of cheaper, poor quality products including electrical cables are being found in retail outlets or installed in homes - this concern has been highlighted by a number of national recalls announced by the ACCC recently.

The ACCC has announced a recall of Infinity and Olsent brand electrical cables, warning of a risk of electrocution or fires due to the insulation becoming prematurely brittle.

This is the biggest recall of electrical cable in Australian history is estimated to affect 40,000 Australian homes and will cost at least $80 million to fix, according to the taskforce set up to fix the issue.

The recall provides financial cover for the costs of removing and replacing cable that has been laid close to heat sources such as hot water systems or in accessible parts of any building, such as roof cavities, where people could come in contact with it.

Matt Kummerow from Laser Electrical based in Bundaberg, said electricity wasn't something to take lightly. 

"Our business has never installed any of the recalled cables," he said.

"If you are not a qualified electrician it would be difficult to gauge the quality of a product.

"Undertaking DIY electrical work is illegal. Unfortunately, this can make the situation worse, unqualified installation plus poor quality cable has the potential to be fatal.

"Penalties for unlicensed work include hefty fines, and may lead to an insurer refusing a claim."

Malcolm Richards from Master Electricians said some cables would need to be checked.

"If you've installed some of the recalled cable yourself, now is the time to get a licensed electrical contractor to come and take it out and replace it with new product that is both safe and legally installed," he said.

"So regardless of who did the work, if you've had electrical cable laid in your home between March 2012 and September 2013, you need to have it checked."

Additionally the ACCC has issued a recall on 4 Outlet Powerboard Model No. LA025A or LA025B.Sold nationwide through Supercheap Auto, BCF and Ray's Outdoors stores.

This product does not comply with Australian and New Zealand electrical safety requirements concerning resistance to fire and a secure connection to inserted plugs and has a potential risk of fire.

"It is critical that if you have any of these products, take urgent action," Mr Kummerow said.

"The ACCC has found that these products will pose a threat to lives, and it's vital that cables and items are removed and identified products are returned to suppliers"

Topics:  electricity, product recalls



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