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Public warned over unsafe electric fan - CHOICE # 371

  • 2007.09.14

The public is warned over the potential fire hazard of one model of electric fan.

The model in question was identified in a safety test conducted by the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department (EMSD) in collaboration with the Consumer Council.

Included in this (September) issue of CHOICE is the test report on 10 models of 12-16 inch electric fans put to a series of laboratory tests in accordance with international safety requirements on electric fans.

The test showed that all models, with the exception of one, were judged to provide reliable safety performance and are safe for use under normal circumstances.

Two 12-inch electric fans were awarded the full score having fully fulfilled all of the 20 clauses of safety requirement.

The score was based on the assessment rating on: abnormal operation (30%), resistance to heat and fire (20%), construction and internal wiring (15%), protection against electric shock (15%), stability and mechanical hazard (15%), marking (5%).

For the remainder models, they were able to fulfill fully 9 of the safety clauses.

The majority of the non-compliance clauses concerned imperfect construction and internal wiring which can be improved by better design and workmanship.

Other non-compliances included: lack of marking or user instructions, imperfect protection against electric shock and failure to fulfill heat resistance requirement.

The suppliers had all agreed to make corresponding improvements on their products or user instructions. EMSD will continue to monitor the safety improvement.

Consumers should take note that although most models should not possess any threat or hazard under normal operation, they are strongly advised to use electric fan with the utmost caution, and be wary of any abnormal operation such as excessive noise or overheating.

Users should cease using electric fans that show signs of abnormality, and have the appliances checked by qualified technicians. Maintain and clean the fan regularly. And as a safety practice, do not forget to switch off the fan when leaving home.

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