A tumble-dryer manufacturer whose faulty machines have been linked to fatal house fires complained to press regulator IPSO about a Daily Mirror story saying it would take four years to complete its repairs backlog.
Whirlpool provided evidence to the press watchdog which suggested that in fact it would get all the potentially deadly machines fixed in three years.
IPSO rejected Whirlpool’s complaint saying that the Mirror was reporting claims on a matter of serious public interest.
The manufacturer complained over a Mirror story published on 15 February headlined: “Faulty tumble dryers that can burst into flames ‘will take 4 years to fix’.
It reported Whirlpool’s claim that it was fixing 3,500 faulty machines a day, and comments from a consumer rights campaigner that – with 5.3m faulty machines produced, it would take four years to fix them all.
Whirlpool complained to IPSO that the story was wrong because it was now repairing 4,325 dryers a day and in four years’ time one million fewer would still be in use.
The Mirror told IPSO that the four-year figure was a claim, based on a company statement, and noted that “even on the basis of the figures provided by Whirlpool – 4.3 million total affected machines and 4,325 daily resolutions – it was clear that the problem would take a very long time to resolve.
“In the best case scenario it would still take almost three years.”