POLITICS

PSA: From Cars To Groceries, Product Recalls Are On The Rise

Cars have topped the list, but hoverboards had quite a showing this year.

02/08/2016 2:35 PM AEST | Updated 02/08/2016 4:32 PM AEST
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Fairfax
A burned out hoverboard

A boost in the number of product recalls in Australia over the past financial year has been attributed in part a lack of supply chain supervision slips amid consumer demand for cheaper goods into the country.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on Tuesday announced there were 670 product recalls in the 2015/2016 financial year, up from 596 in 2014/2015.

ACCC Deputy Chair Delia Rickard told the ABC factors such as suppliers becoming more aware of their obligations, social media allowing alerts about dodgy products to go out quicker and ACCC checks could also have played a role in the rise.

ACCC
The ACCC poll results suggest that 70 per cent of people will return a recalled good that cost $25 or more.

"More and more when suppliers are looking to be able to sell lower cost goods they are outsourcing manufacturing to overseas where there is not the same direct oversight, and without proper supply chain integrity procedures in place, we're finding more and more faulty goods coming into the country," she said.

At 182, cars remained the one category recalled in 2016, up from 169 the previous year.

Groceries and food were the second category at 123, up from 71 the previous year. Rickard said a lot of the food recalls had to do with a lack of labelling of allergens, as well as contaminants.

Recalls of hobby, sport and recreation goods were at 79, compared to 44 a year ago.

Unsafe self-balancing scooters, or "hoverboards," which have been linked to house fires, accounted for about 20 recalls over the year, Rickard said.

"We've had six houses now which have had fires as a result of hoverboards charging so it's really important that you check those recalls and you check with your supplier that your hoverboard complies with relevant safety requirements," she said.

Fairfax
Ash Ibraheim with a burnt out hoverboard in his daughter's bedroom in Strathmore, following a fire.

In mid-July the Federal introduced a mandatory standard under the Australian Consumer Law to ensure the safety of hoverboards following a ban.

The ACCC had conducted a safety investigation and found imminent fire safety risks result from defective electrical circuitry and substandard lithium-ion batteries in some hoverboards.

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