If you previously checked your dehumidifier to see if it was included in the Gree recall last year, please look again. And if you have not yet checked your dehumidifier, we strongly suggest you do so immediately.
GE-brand dehumidifiers, which were made by Gree Electric Appliances, were added in January 2014 to Gree’s recall of more than 2 million dehumidifiers. Gree has also added more Soleus Air models to the recall and expanded the date codes to include more products.
The firm and CPSC are now aware of the following reports associated with all 13 brands of recalled dehumidifiers:
The number of reported overheating incidents increased from 119 to 471 and the number of reported fires increased from 46 to 121 in the 7 months since the recall was first announced in September.
Don’t let this happen to you:
If you have a dehumidifier in your home, check the two recall notices below to see if YOUR dehumidifier is included in the recalls. The recalled brands are:
The specific models are listed here:
If you own one of the recalled products, stop using it and contact Gree for a refund.]]>
CPSC is continuing to make great progress with our child safety work to establish federal safety rules for infant and toddler products. The newest one, which takes effect Sept. 29, 2014, is for soft infant and toddler carriers.
A soft carrier is usually made of sewn fabric and holds a child upright. It is designed to be worn by a caregiver. Soft carriers are typically meant for full-term babies who weigh seven pounds or more through toddlers up to 45 pounds.
The new regulation requires that all new soft infant carriers will be tested to meet safety standards. Some key safety requirements are:
CPSC received nearly 125 incident reports—including four deaths—related to soft infant and toddler carriers between January 1999 and July 15, 2013.
Whether your child is placed in a crib, a stroller, or a babywearing product, we want you to have confidence that these products are covered by strong safety standards.]]>
About a year and a half ago, we began warning you about dangers connected to single-load liquid laundry packets. These packets are filled with highly concentrated, toxic chemicals. A 7-month-old in Florida died from swallowing the soap.
CPSC has received about 1,230 reports of children unintentionally injuring themselves with packets. Injuries include swallowing the detergent and getting the chemical in their eyes or on their skin. The Poison Help Line reports even more: Nearly 17,500.
Several companies that make these packets—Cot ‘n Wash, Dial, Procter & Gamble, and Sun Products—have agreed to make some changes to begin addressing these safety concerns. We want you to know about these changes, as CPSC was a driving force in making them happen. Importantly, though, we believe more must be done, and we’re continuing to call on companies to build more safety into these products more quickly and more robustly.
Here are some of the changes so far:
Safety standards: Makers and sellers of laundry packets have come together, along with consumer advocates and CPSC staff, to start the process of creating a voluntary consensus standard. ASTM International, a standards setting organization, is overseeing this process. The goal is for all of the members to work together, as quickly as possible, to craft a strong safety standard that meaningfully protects children from these products.
Opaque packaging: Part of the allure of these packets for young children is that they can look like familiar items such as candy, toys and teething products. Companies have changed the containers that hold the packets to be opaque.
Labels and Warnings: “Keep Out of Reach of Children” and “Keep Contents Out of Eyes” safety warning stickers and graphics have been placed in multiple places on the containers. Also, look for posters and other warnings near laundry packets in stores. Warning labels alone are not the answer, but are part of a larger system of safety.
In addition, companies are researching a switch to containers that are more difficult for children to open. Safety latches—both on containers and on cabinets—can be a deterrent to children getting access to these packets. As with all household cleaning products, make sure to keep these packets tightly closed in the original containers and out of sight and out of reach of young children.
These companies also report that they are researching chemical formulations of the laundry detergent in the packets, with the goal to find formulations that remain effective, but are less toxic.
Our hope is that these first steps for these products make them safer and that all companies that make liquid laundry packets will join these safety efforts.
Follow these safety tips if you use these products in your home:
Remember, these packets can quickly dissolve upon contact with water, wet hands and saliva. They can also rupture, releasing the chemicals into eyes. If you or your child swallows or is exposed to these chemicals, call Poison Help immediately at (800) 222-1222.]]>
Good news, parents! CPSC has approved a new federal safety standard that will improve the safety of all carriages and strollers sold after September 10, 2015.
From January 2008 through June 2013, CPSC staff received about 1,300 safety-related reports for children 4 years old and younger that involved strollers. The numbers, which may change in the future as more reports come into the agency, include:
The new safety standard requires that all strollers and carriages be made, tested and labeled to minimize the hazards seen in the above incidents. These include:
Once the rule takes effect, nearly all strollers sold are required to meet the new requirements. Here are just a few of the stroller types:
Remember, buckle your child up every time you use the stroller and never leave a child unattended in a stroller. After all, falls are the cause of many injuries associated with strollers.
As Acting Chairman Bob Adler recently said, “I believe it is time that we put a strong mandatory standard in place: A federal standard that helps to ensure that a stroller ride is a safe ride for babies and an equally safe ride for toddlers.”]]>
Do you have an old wooden storage chest lying around your home? Maybe, it’s in an attic? Maybe, you’ve put it in your child’s room?
Recently, two Boston-area children tragically died while playing hide and seek in a chest. The children reportedly climbed into a Lane hope chest that latched shut automatically. There was no way to open the airtight chest from the inside.
CPSC is investigating the deaths of the children.
Lane Cedar Chests were first recalled in 1996. The recall involves 12 million “Lane” and “Virginia Maid”-brand cedar chests made between 1912 and 1987. This recall is still active. Lane renewed its search for hazardous chests in March 2000, upon learning of another death and two near deaths.
If you have one of these chests, Lane wants you to know that they are still providing new, latches and locks that prevent children from being trapped inside the chest. Contact the company to request a new latch/lock. While you await the arrival of the new hardware, remove the existing hardware set from your chest. Don’t take a chance that this could happen to a child in your life.
To get replacement hardware for your Lane or Virginia Maid storage chest free of charge, contact the company at http://www.lanefurniture.com/. CPSC has received reports of 34 child deaths since 1996 in chests, including toy chests, cedar chests, cedar trunks, hope chests, blanket chests, storage benches, storage trunks and cedar boxes. Lane cedar chests were not involved in all of these deaths.
If you own any type of chest or storage trunk that is not part of the recall, disable or remove the lock or latch that secures the lid.]]>
How many of you know that you can search those reports before you spend your own money on a particular product?
Since the launch of SaferProducts.gov in March 2011, more than 18,000 product safety reports have been submitted to CPSC. The site gets about 200,000 visits every month.
Those numbers are a good start. But we want to do better. That’s where you come in.
The Consumer Product Safety Apps Challenge is simple: Create apps and innovative tools that raise awareness of these reports and of consumer product recalls.
You can get the reports through our SaferProducts API. The recalls API is here.
Mash up the information with product review sites, auction sites and search. Get creative and come up with the next brilliant idea for educating consumers about product safety.
Your reward? You can put on your resume that you built something that saved lives and prevented injuries. Plus, you get to meet our Acting Chairman and take home $1,000. We’ll feature the four winners in a live webcast award ceremony (archived on YouTube), where you’ll get to show off your work.
The complete contest and rules are available at Productsafetyapps.challengepost.com]]>
Sarah E. Goode was a furniture store owner and the first African-American woman to receive a patent. Her patent was for a space-saving, innovative solution that combined a bed and a cabinet. She received her patent for a Folding Cabinet Bed on July 14, 1885—27 years before William Lawrence Murphy patented his fold-up “Murphy Bed” design.
Goode’s bed could be folded up into a cabinet that was also a roll-top desk. The desk had spaces for paper, writing tools and storage.
While CPSC is not aware of safety concerns with Goode’s original bed design, we keep up with the latest trends in sleep solutions and look for ways to promote bedding safety.
Today, CPSC focuses bedding safety efforts on:
At CPSC, we help make everyday products safer for you.]]>
The ingenuity of African American inventors Lewis Latimer and Philip Downing allowed consumers to see the light, literally. These pioneers were instrumental in bringing the age of electricity safely into consumers’ homes.
Lewis Howard Latimer received a patent in January 1881 for an improved process for creating a carbon filament for light bulbs. His filament was more durable and longer lasting than earlier filaments, such as Thomas Edison’s original paper filament. His innovation provided incandescent light bulbs that were affordable to more consumers and safer than gas lamps, which were generally used at the time.
Latimer also helped draft the necessary drawings required for Alexander Graham Bell to receive a patent for his version of the telephone, co-patented an improved toilet system for railroad cars and was a patent consultant to various law firms. He was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2006.
Philip Downing designed an electrical switch that allowed railroad workers to turn the power supply on or off for railroad trains as needed. He received a patent for it in 1890. Electrical switches, like the ones used to turn lights on and off in most homes, are based on his design. He also designed the first street letter box that protected mail from being stolen, the prototype for the mailboxes used by the postal service today.
In the years since Latimer’s and Downing’s innovations, the safety of electrical products has improved vastly. For more than 40 years, CPSC staff have been working hard to continue to reduce the risk of harm from electrical products and to give you the information you need to use them safely.
And we make it easy to report safety problems online, without looking for a mailbox.
At CPSC, we help make everyday products safer for you.]]>
Did you know that asking for the “real McCoy” started with a product invented by an African American?
Mechanical engineer Elijah McCoy received a patent for an automatic steam engine lubricating device in 1872. The device made it possible for train engines to be lubricated while they ran, saving the railroad time and money. When railroad engineers wanted to make sure they received lubricators designed by him and not inferior imitations, they asked for the “real McCoy” system.
Before he died in 1929, McCoy held patents for 56 other inventions, including patents for a folding ironing board and a lawn sprinkler. He was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2001.
Just like nearly two and a half centuries ago, U.S. consumers want to be assured the products they use are what they expect. Safety is one of those expectations. Due to the work of CPSC and other federal agencies, consumers can rest assured that many products found in homes today are safer to use than ever before.
At CPSC, we help make everyday products safer for you.
Check the products in your home at www.SaferProducts.gov; follow recalls at www.cpsc.gov/recalls, on Twitter @USCPSC or by signing up to receive recall emails; and learn more information in our Safety Education Centers.]]>
This infographic is also posted on CPSC’s Flickr page for easy sharing.
But name recognition is important. Agencies like FDA, CDC, and NASA are well associated with their acronym. And so it should be for us. That’s why we’ve changed our Twitter handle to @USCPSC.
From now on, watch for our tweets from @USCPSC. We’ve got all the same valuable information: recalls, safety tips, free posters, infographics and the latest updates on the agency’s work.
Continue to follow us, retweet us and share our new name!
In addition, you can connect with us on YouTube, G+, Flickr, our blog and Slideshare. If you speak Spanish or know someone who does, follow us @SeguridadConsum.]]>
First Posted: Dec. 6, 2013
Dangerous ice and snow is sweeping across the plains, south, and heading east. There are expected to be widespread power outages associated with this large storm.
Are you planning on using a portable gas generator to help you during or after the storm this week?
When dealing with severe winter weather and power outages some people take unnecessary risks. Do not take extra risks with your generator. It can be deadly. (Take a look at this infographic to see just how deadly.) Its invisible odorless CO exhaust can kill you and your family in just minutes.
Be safe. Put your generator:
When you use a generator, be sure to have a working CO alarm in your home. (Note: You should do this anyway.)
Finally, know the initial symptoms of CO poisoning:
Get outside into fresh air quickly and call 911 immediately. Know what to do.
* Minimum distance recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Here’s more information on carbon monoxide.]]>
Our expert engineer, John Massale, explained some toy testing scenarios and talked about toy hazards to look for. Spokeswoman Nikki Fleming, who has nearly two decades of experience talking about toy safety, gave general toy shopping tips and talked about recalls and injuries associated with toys.]]>
IKEA is recalling these lights and supplying you with free self-adhesive fasteners to attach the lamp’s cord to the wall.
Two children, a 16-month-old and a 15-month-old, got tangled in the lamp’s cord while the children were in their cribs. One child died, the other nearly strangled. In both of these instances, the children pulled the lamp cords into the crib.
Take down these lamps until you get and install the free repair kit from IKEA. Here’s IKEA’s contact information:
This recall is the second in the past month involving cords strangling young children. In November, Angelcare announced a recall to repair movement and sound baby monitors after two deaths. Keep all cords possible at least 3 feet away from your baby’s crib. Here are more @OnSafety blogs explaining various kid/cord issues.]]>
That’s when CPSC will host our first Google+ Hangout. CPSC’s lead toy engineer and our toy safety spokeswoman will be live.
Our expert engineer, John Massale, will explain some toy testing scenarios and talk about toy hazards to look for. Spokeswoman Nikki Fleming, who has nearly two decades of experience talking about toy safety, will take general toy shopping, recall and injury questions.
Post your questions to us via Twitter or Google+ using the #AskCPSC hashtag or on CPSC’s G+ Hangout event page.]]>