Inquest into Beko fridge freezer fire which killed father Santosh Benjamin-Muthiah, in Wealdstone, continues

Santosh Benjamin-Muthiah

Santosh Benjamin-Muthiah

First published in News
Last updated
Harrow Times: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

Investigators have given evidence at an inquest into the death of a father killed in a fire caused by a faulty fridge freezer.

Santosh Benjamin-Muthiah, 36, died after a blaze at his home in Grant Road, Wealdstone, on November 11, in 2010.

North London Coroners Court has been hearing evidence for the past two weeks about how the fire was caused by the family’s Beko fridge freezer.

Today the court heard London Fire Brigade investigations officer Andrew Vaughn-Davis give evidence about capacitors, a key component in all manufactured fridge freezers.

He explained capacitors are used in wide range of electronic goods and there have been problems for many years with some failing and causing fires.

When asked about Beko fridge freezer products he said: “It was quite clear there was an issue with component failures.”

Mr Vaughn-Davis added that if the capacitor in any product should fail, it would become a "significant heat source".

Referring to refrigerator units and the materials they are made off, he said they can ignite and burn easily.

He added: “Any fire involving a refrigeration unit can be severe and a danger to life.”

The court has previously heard from Clayton Witter, who was managing director for Beko from 2002 to 2010, who said the company had first heard about fires being caused by fridge products in 2003.

Legal representation for Beko pointed out to the court that issues with capacitors failing are seen across all brands and products.

Mr Vaughn-Davis also told the court about the number of incidents with Beko fridge freezer fires the brigade had been made aware of from July 21 2011 to 17 June 2014.

The court heard there had been 25 incidents and 23 of them had been investigated by the fire brigade.

Coroner Andrew Walker also discussed the exchange of information between the fire brigade and trading standards about reports of fires caused by any household products.

He brought up possibility of recommending a centralised product fire list, which local authority trading standards and fire services across the country would be able to access and add too should they come across an incident.

The inquest continues.

Comments

Post a comment

Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this post’ link.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree