New inspection malpractice found at Mitsubishi Electric

Yomiuri Shimbun file photo
Mitsubishi Electric Corp’s headquarters in Chiyoda-ward, Tokyo

TOKYO (Jiji Press) — Mitsubishi Electric Corp. said Thursday that it has uncovered new cases of inspection misconduct involving electric transformers used at power plants and substations.

The misconduct, in which the company falsified quality-testing reports, involved a plant in Ako, Hyogo Prefecture, affecting 3,384 transformers, or about 40% of all units shipped between 1982 and last month.

The falsified inspection was discovered by an investigation committee set up by the company after a series of inspection misconduct came to light last year.

The company had written in testing reports for some of its extra high voltage transformers that they had met conditions demanded by clients in preshipment tests, despite conducting inspections under different conditions.

It had also designed products that did not meet in-house standards.

Mitsubishi Electric suspended shipments of the transformers after discovering the falsification on April 1. In a statement, the company apologized for the incident.

Client power utilities have yet to report issues with the affected products. Mitsubishi Electric said it will conduct special inspections if need be.

Mitsubishi Electric said the investigation committee told it that “more time is needed until the completion” of investigations at all 22 of its plants following the latest revelation.

The investigations were initially set to be completed this month.

The company discovered a string of inspection malpractices last year at multiple plants, including one in Togitsu, Nagasaki Prefecture.

The chairman and president of the company at the time stepped down to take responsibility.