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ACI Reveals Homebase Continues to Sell Defective Cable

Almost three years since its recall, the Approved Cables Initiative (ACI) has revealed that defective Atlas Kablo cable has been once again found on sale in a Homebase store.

On-going market surveillance by the ACI, an industry-wide working group, led to the discovery in January of Atlas Kablo cable in the home enhancement retailer’s Mold store in North Wales – the fourth time Homebase has been found to be selling the cable after the manufacturer’s product recall. Atlas Kablo cable was the subject of a product recall in the summer of 2010 when several cables were identified as defective. The recall from the UK market followed Atlas Kablo’s suspension by BASEC (British Approvals Service for Cables) of its product certification licence and by HAR of its scheme certification licence from the Turkish Standards Institute, TSE.

At the time it was believed that these cables had been sold directly to electrical contractors however the ACI later revealed that the cable had been available to the public through Homebase and Focus DIY. Turkish company, Atlas Kablo, has since ceased trading.

Commenting on this latest discovery, a spokesperson for Homebase said: “We became aware of an issue with Atlas Kablo electrical cable back in 2010 and immediately took steps to remove this product from sale.

“Recall notices were issued to all of our stores instructing the removal of affected cable from sale. After the first recall notice had been issued and the appropriate stock was returned to the supplier, a supplier error meant that some of the same cable was re-delivered to stores, prompting us to issue another recall notice to remove the items from sale.

“All affected stock should have been returned to the supplier and we are sorry to understand that some of this stock has been found in a store. We have contacted the store in question to ensure this entire product has been removed and are now issuing further recall notices to stores asking them to re-check all electrical cables for the item in question. Further processes are also being put in place to ensure Homebase doesn’t inadvertently sell this electrical cable in the future.”

The ACI was established in 2010 to highlight the dangers of unsafe, substandard and counterfeit cable. Initially its remit was to bringing this issue to the attention of the electrical supply industry and members of the public but its long term goal is to grow support for legislative change to stop the manufacture and import of dangerous cable into the UK.

Peter Smeeth, spokesperson for the ACI said: “It is disappointing and very worrying to find that despite previous reassurances from this retailer that robust recall measures have put in place, we were still able to buy recalled Atlas Kablo cable this week.

“This incident reinforces the need for continued vigilance by those responsible for purchasing cable and the importance of carrying out vital checks to ensure what has been ordered is what is received before installation of the cable.

“Although more than 10 million metres of this cable have already been destroyed there remain many millions of metres unaccounted for in the UK market. As the ACI broadens its channels of communication we are very keen to hear of any further Atlas Kablo cable discoveries as well as other concerns contractors and distributors may have regarding non-compliant and defective cables.”

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