FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE  
June 22, 1984  
Release # 84-042
 

Washington, D.C. - The Consumer Product Safety Commission and Symmons Industries, Inc. of Braintree, Massachusetts, today joined in warning the public of the potential scalding hazard associated with their pressure-balancing shower systems when not properly installed and adjusted. The Commission is presently aware of 12 incidents, including 4 deaths, associated with the Symmons shower systems.

The shower systems are sold under the brand names "Temptrol", "Safetymix", and "Visu-Temp". The brand names are on the face plate behind the shower handle.

These shower systems are most frequently used in motels, hotels, apartments, nursing homes, institutional care facilities, and athletic facilities. A substantial number of these shower systems have been distributed since 1947. They sell at retail between $76.20 and $138.00.

The Commission and Symmons warn that scalding may occur in the shower systems when there is a failure on the part of the installer to set the temperature-limiting device in the pressure balancing valve, known as the Limit Stop Screw. As a result, there is unusually hot water in the plumbing system because of a failure of other temperature-controlling devices else where in the plumbing system.

Symmons is placing warning statements in its installation and user instructions, and placing warning sticker labels on the shower system to warn the installer of the potential scalding hazard when these units are not properly installed and adjusted.

Owners, users, and operators of facilities which have the Symmons shower systems should check the water temperature of the shower system at its hottest setting. If the water temperature is more than 120° degrees F., the shower system and the central hot water system should be checked and adjusted by a plumber.

Symmons states that its pressure-balancing shower system are effective in preventing scalds when properly installed and adjusted, and that its cooperation with the Commission is addressing the potential scalding hazard is not an admission that there is any defect in the products involved.

Anyone wishing additional information may contact Symmons Industries, Inc. at 617-848-2256; or the Consumer Product Safety Commission toll-free Hotline at 800-638-CPSC. A teletypewriter number for the hearing-impaired is (301) 595-7054.