Note: Remedy Change.
|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Originally issued April 25, 2003, Revised May 23, 2006
Release # 03-116
|Firm's Recall Hotline: (888) 551-5014
CPSC Consumer Hotline: (800) 638-2772
CPSC Media Contact: (301) 504-7908
CPSC, American Household Inc., (Formerly Sunbeam Corp.) Announce Recall of Star ME-1 Dry Fire Sprinklers, Administrative Lawsuit Settlement
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and American Household Inc. (AHI), formerly known as Sunbeam Corporation, of Boca Raton, Fla., today announced the nationwide recall of about 60,000 Star ME-1 dry fire sprinklers. Chemetron Corporation, an inactive subsidiary of AHI, manufactured these sprinklers from 1977 through 1982. This recall announcement follows the resolution of an administrative proceeding (Part 1) (Part 2) filed by CPSC on October 9, 2001, in which CPSC alleged these sprinklers are defective and are likely to fail to operate in a fire, thereby exposing consumers to the risk of death or serious injury.
CPSC reports that samples of Star ME-1 sprinklers removed from several locations and tested by independent testing laboratories did not operate as intended. Although there have been no reports that Star ME-1 dry sprinklers manufactured by Chemetron Corporation have failed to operate while in use, CPSC has received reports of two failures involving Star ME-1 dry sprinklers manufactured by other companies. One report involved a 1976 sprinkler, and the other, sprinklers installed in 1990.
Chemetron's Star ME-1 sprinklers have the following information molded onto the sprinkler: the name "Star," the designation "ME-1," and the year of manufacture, starting with 1977 and ending with 1982. These sprinklers were typically installed in areas of buildings where the sprinklers or water supply pipes may be subject to freezing. Examples of such areas include unheated attics, freezers and coolers, porches, and parking garages. The types of facilities in which the sprinklers were installed include nursing homes, convalescent and long-term care facilities, supermarkets and other stores, warehouses, hospitals, and office buildings.
Although Sunbeam Corporation filed for bankruptcy protection in February 2001, AHI has agreed to pay up to $1 million to assist in the replacement of the Star ME-1 dry sprinklers that Chemetron manufactured from 1977 through 1982.
AHI's sprinkler replacement reimbursement program has concluded. For more information, consumers should call (316) 219-7325. CPSC previously announced that Mealane Corporation voluntarily agreed to recall Star ME-1 sprinklers manufactured from 1961 through 1976 and Central Sprinkler Company voluntarily agreed to replace Star ME-1 fire sprinklers manufactured from 1996 through 1998. The Sprinkler Corporation of Milwaukee, which manufactured Star ME-1 sprinklers from 1983 through 1995, has no assets with which to fund a recall, but is issuing a safety notice warning building owners to replace these sprinklers.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is still interested in receiving incident or injury reports that are either directly related to this product recall or involve a different hazard with the same product. Please tell us about your experience with the product on SaferProducts.gov
CPSC is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of the thousands of consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $900 billion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals - contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 30 years.
Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly-announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go online to www.SaferProducts.gov or call CPSC's Hotline at (800) 638-2772 or teletypewriter at (301) 595-7054 for the hearing impaired. Consumers can obtain news release and recall information at www.cpsc.gov, on Twitter @OnSafety or by subscribing to CPSC's free e-mail newsletters.