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White goods maker Whirlpool UK has revealed 65,000 people have alerted it to faulty tumble dryers in the last eight weeks.
Manufacturer Whirlpool, based in Morley Way, launched a £1 million advertising campaign in July in a renewed bid to trace 500,000 tumble dryers made between 2004 and 2015 that are reckoned to be unsafe.
The company says the campaign has been a huge success so far with the 65,000 contacts compared to less than 10,000 throughout the first half of the year.
Also, more than 85,000 consumers have contacted the company in the last eight weeks to check if their dryers are affected.
Now Whirlpool has repeated its urgent appeal for people to get in touch if their tumble dryers have not yet been replaced or modified under its product recall programme.
News of the updated recall comes just weeks after a blaze engulfed 40 lorry trailers at the Whirlpool premises two weeks ago.
Jeff Noel, Vice President of Whirlpool, which bought the Indesit company four years ago, said: "We’re hugely grateful to everyone who has come forward so far, but if there are people still out there with affected dryers, please contact us immediately.
"Nothing matters more to us than people’s safety, so it’s absolutely vital that we can identify where these affected dryers are and resolve the issue.
He added: “We can assure consumers that we are doing everything we can, and that we can quickly provide a remedy as soon as they get in touch.”
The new advertising campaign came in the wake of mounting criticism from MPs and consumer groups concerned at the length of time the company was taking to tackle the issue, which it first raised four years ago.
But Whirlpool says it has resolved the safety issue for more than 1.7 million people – around half the affected dryers that were in the market when the programme began in 2015.
It has also produced a string of figures to illustrate the lengths it is going to end the crisis.
It says its action in the last eight weeks have led to the recall message being seen or heard more than 240 million times.
Its campaign has involved full-page notices in Britain’s most-read national newspapers and magazines, and hundreds of adverts in regional and national online, radio, and print media, with a collective circulation of over 100 million.
More than 450 UK media articles have been generated about the recall, estimated to have been seen more than 110 million times.
Whirlpool has also been working with thousands of third-party organisations and individuals to raise awareness, from GP surgeries and hospitals, to MPs, local authorities, Fire and Rescue Services, and charities – reaching millions more people.
Recall notices have been translated into more than 10 different languages commonly spoken in Britain and shared with hundreds of organisations with connections to non-English speakers.
Social media posts about the recall are also estimated to have reached people around 30 million times.
WHAT TO DO:
The safety issue relates to certain models of Hotpoint, Indesit, Creda, Swan and Proline dryers built between 2004 and 2015. Affected dryers pose a potential fire risk if not modified or replaced by the manufacturer.
Whirlpool says anyone with an affected dryer must unplug it immediately and stop using it.
People can instantly check if their dryer is one of those affected by calling 0800 151 0905 or by visiting www.whirlpool.co.uk/dryerrecall. Whirlpool’s call centre is open seven days a week.
Consumers whose dryers have already been replaced or modified by Whirlpool need take no further action.
Under the recall, consumers have a greater choice of remedy options. These include: a free replacement dryer; a free in-home modification; or a refund based on the age of their appliance. Consumers can also choose to upgrade their affected dryer to a superior model compared to the free replacement dryer for a fraction of the retail price.
On average, it takes just seven days for consumers to receive a resolution from the moment they have chosen their preferred remedy option.