Thermomix appliances responsible for 87 burns cases
A new report has alleged that the company “attempted to blame victims and downplay the dangers” of the cooking appliance.
WARNING: GRAPHIC IMAGES BELOW
The popular cooking appliance Thermomix has been responsible for a whopping 87 burns cases.
The shocking numbers have been collated by consumer advocacy group Choice, who discovered that 18 of these cases needed treatment, and eight people needed to be hospitalised – some of which were in the special burns unit for up to three weeks.
The Thermomix products identified in these cases were TM31 and TM5.
According to a mass incident report studied by Choice, 83 of the incidents were from the TM31 model and four were from the TM5.
There were also complaints of 26 occasions of near misses of hot liquid when the appliance exploded, but no one was hurt.
Customers had been making serious complaints about the TM31 at least a whole year before the product was put on the national recall list, according to Choice.
Choice’s Tom Godfrey said: “Based on the incidents identified in our report, it appears Thermomix should have made at least two mandatory reports before October 2014 and another eight after that date.”
“A responsible company should have acted quickly to address any dangers with products but based on consumer reports Thermomix Australia took more than a year between initial notification and recall.”
The ACCC’s mandatory reporting guidelines state that within two days of becoming aware of a serious injury from the product, the manufacturer must provide written notice to Federal Minister for Consumer Affairs.
Choice started investigating further when it was discovered that the Thermomix company was forcing customers into non-disclosure agreements before they granted them refunds.
On the release of this report, Choice is urging ACCC to issue a safety warning on the appliance.
Godfrey added: “These reports also allege the company has attempted to blame victims and downplay the danger this product presents.”
“It is deeply concerning that, in a number of cases, when the company was informed of an incident they blamed the consumer by classifying the product’s failure as ‘user error’.”
In March, multiple cases of Thermomix explosions came to light with serious injuries for those in the firing line, including a [Perth mum who suffered second-degree burns] (http://www.aww.com.au/latest-news/news-stories/woman-suffers-horrific-burns-when-thermomix-explodes-25795|target=”_blank”) to her chest, arms and stomach (seen below).
A Thermomix spokesman responded in a statement, saying that “the safety, welfare and support” of its customers was their “highest priority”.
“Thermomix in Australia (TiA) and Vorwerk, the manufacturer, are aware of the allegations made in CHOICE’s report to the ACCC,” he said.
“We have always fully cooperated with the ACCC and will continue to do so.”
“We do not wish to prejudice the outcome of the ACCC’s review of matters reported to it by commenting further at this time.”