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Advice on Health and Safety

 
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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
Posts: 4088
Location: France/Spain/Peterborough/Tenerife

PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 10:44 am    Post subject: Advice on Health and Safety Reply with quote

Our glass dining table just exploded! I was in the next room when it happened so fortunately wasn't hurt, but I dread to think of what might have happened if we had been using it at the time.

It's one of those with extending leaves which lie underneath it, and if you pull on a lever the leaves slide outwards and upwards. Somehow, some mechanism has packed in and the two extending leaves have sprung up and are now about 10 inches apart. The large central part must have been forced upwards and has broken into hundreds of pieces.

This strikes me as pretty damned dangerous, but the store I bought it from (Cargo) has now closed down. I doubt I've got any paperwork on this to establish the manufacturer so I can contact them.

I feel someone should know about this, but I don't know who to contact. Any ideas?
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Helen May



Joined: 10 Dec 2006
Posts: 18216
Location: Cheshire

PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heavens that was dangerous Minx. Thank goodness you weren't in the room.

Can't think of anyone for you to contact but will have a think.

You know it would maybe be the kind of story that the JV show could cover going on the aspect of H&S and so many firms going out of business etc. You won't be the only one to have bought the table.

H
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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
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Location: France/Spain/Peterborough/Tenerife

PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for responding Helen.

I just keep thinking about children sitting at a table like that, with their faces so much closer to the explosion than ours would have been. No doubt about it, we probably would have been injured too as the glass, not to mention our dinners would have gone straight up and into our faces had this happened last night.

We haven't used the extending mechanism for over a year now, so it can't be just that we didn't put it back right. Very worrying, not to mention the mess.

Waiting for the OH to return from golf to see what happened and whether we can claim on insurance. Oh.... and to clean it up, of course. Wink
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ruddlescat



Joined: 16 Sep 2010
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Location: Near Chester

PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first thing to do is to report the position to Trading Standards though if the seller has gone bust and the item is manufactured abroad it might be difficult but at least the matter can be properly investigated

If any other thoughts occur to me I'll let you know
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Helen May



Joined: 10 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's the kind of thing that needs to have a warning in the papers about dangers, in a similar way to when glass has got into food production in error. As they are no longer in business it's going to be hard to get that done.

H
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ruddlescat



Joined: 16 Sep 2010
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Location: Near Chester

PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 11:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Minx I know this is probably not the most important thing right now but if the table cost more than 100 and at least that amount was paid on a credit card you can probably claim the whole cost back under Section 70 of the Consumer Credit Act 1974

If this applies and you need further details just let me know and I'll give you more information
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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for that info Ruddlescat. We've been onto Trading Standards and they said we could do that if we paid by credit card, which we did. They are getting back to us on the safety angle.

I've now found some paperwork with an address on it, so we will contact the suppliers as TS said about it not being fit for purpose etc

We've also contacted our insurers who might need to send someone round so I can't clear the mess up for a couple of hours.

Now that OH is back, he's examined it and says it's nothing to do with the mechanism. The large plate of glass which forms the unextended table top, has just literally shattered on its own. The extensions are undamaged.

Neither of us have even been in that room this morning, though we did eat at that table last night and it's north facing so not related to heat expansion or anything.

Really weird. And very unnerving. It's probably safety glass so might not cut you, but some pieces are bullet sized, others about 8 inches long. Pretty good projectiles that could have done a lot of damage to someone with their face just above it.
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Minx

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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
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Location: France/Spain/Peterborough/Tenerife

PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 6:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just to finish this one off - apparently it's well documented that glass can explode spontaneously. More common in patio doors and windows apparently but there are a number of documented cases of dining tables exploding. Something to do with nickel sulphate in the glass itself and it can take several years after manufacture for this to happen. Our table was four years old.

Don't think we'll replace it with another glass one!
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FleetingEileenM



Joined: 30 Mar 2010
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Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 9:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's an awful thing to happen Minx. You and yours were so lucky not to be near it at the time.

I see that a similar one is currently on offer on eBay so some publicity would seem like a good idea.
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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 1:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Eileen. I notified Jeremy Vine's programme and they wanted to do an interview on today's show. I had to go to the BBC studio in Peterborough.There is a photo, though not the most dramatic, of the shattered table on the JV website, and he said he'd had a dozen or so callers say the same thing had happened to them, thought mostly with shower screen doors.

Anyway, I've managed to contact Cargo and they've offered me a new table, oak, black wood or ........ glass!
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Helen May



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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 2:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heard you, and you came over very well Minx!

H
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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 3:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Helen.

There was someone in the office who works for BBC Cambridgeshire so they did another interview for the Drivetime programme tonight. I might think twice before I raise an issue again, I was so nervous waiting in the studio for the link to be switched through.

But anyway, people are warned now, and we've got the offer of a replacement table. The MD of Cargo couldn't have been nicer.
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ruddlescat



Joined: 16 Sep 2010
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 3:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I missed the show today which is unusual for me but I've just listened on I Player

I thought the whole thing came across very well and it was quite astonishing that so many other listeners had experienced similar problems

As was pointed out if there was a young child in a room when it happened the consequences could be disastrous but at least you succeeded in getting the shop to take the matter seriously

Only this morning the thought occured to me that about a month ago I gave my ex wife an ornate glass table which I had no space for here

If she heard the programme she'll probably be on the phone tonight complaining that I'm trying to kill her Laughing
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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 10, 2011 5:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ruddlescat wrote:


Only this morning the thought occured to me that about a month ago I gave my ex wife an ornate glass table which I had no space for here

If she heard the programme she'll probably be on the phone tonight complaining that I'm trying to kill her Laughing


Laughing Laughing
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Minx

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FleetingEileenM



Joined: 30 Mar 2010
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2011 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've just listened on iPlayer Minx and thought you came over very well and clear-headed, in spite of being live on air.

That is certainly a dramatic photo and weren't there some scary stories from other listeners later on?

I wonder why glass tables can't be coated with some kind of polymer substance to hold glass fragments together if they should shatter?
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Minx



Joined: 09 Dec 2006
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Location: France/Spain/Peterborough/Tenerife

PostPosted: Sat Jun 11, 2011 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Eileen. I think the glass used in these tables would have to be some kind of safety glass or tempered glass so that it couldn't lacerate if this happened. Nevertheless, as the 'expert' said, all things contain energy, and my worry was that young children in the vicinity might suffer eye or other facial injuries from the projectiles.

As I said in the interview, I wasn't sure if the table had exploded upwards, as my back was turned, but it was clear from the shards, some of which actually reached the kitchen where I was, that there was a lot of sideways propulsion.

Anyway, no harm done this time.
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