England

Beko cooker grill defect warning on LPG models

  • 5 July 2013
  • From the section England
Flavel cooker
Image caption A faulty Flavel cooker was responsible for the deaths of Richard Smith and Kevin Branton in Cornwall

Hundreds more untraced cookers converted to LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) could contain a potentially lethal defect, manufacturer Beko says.

The fault, responsible for eight deaths, was thought to apply to 13 models and affect 21,000 cookers, of which 6,000 have yet to be traced.

Now Beko has said 837 converted Beko, Leisure or Flavel models made before 2009, may pose a serious safety risk.

A company spokesman said that 480 of these are as yet untraced.

He told BBC News the LPG conversion kits were supplied in the UK for cookers with a separate grill and oven.

"We want to find them urgently so we can implement the simple modification, free of charge, and eliminate the safety risk," he said.

"When we identified the issue with the LPG conversions on these specific models, we immediately instructed our call centres to tell anyone who requested a kit from Beko that they had to make the door seal modification as part of the installation.

"We also started to include instructions in the LPG conversion kits we supplied that the modification to the door seal must be made when the kit is installed."

Beko began a product recall in November 2008 when it became aware of a safety risk if the grill on certain models was turned on while the door was closed.

Richard Smith, 30, and 34-year-old Kevin Branton died in November 2010 when their Flavel cooker's grill produced high levels of carbon monoxide at their home in Saltash, Cornwall.

In December, Cornwall trading standards told the inquest into their deaths at least six other people had died as a result of the "known" defect.

Beko said it was still trying to trace 6,100 of the 21,000 customers who have bought the potentially defective mains gas models.

The updated safety information about all of its cookers has been put on its website.

Adverts will also be placed in national newspapers and other media outlets, the Beko spokesman said, as well as a targeted advertising campaign for caravanning websites.

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