Recently, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) re-issued a recall for Comfort-Aire and Goldstar dehumidifiers. About 98,000 of these units present a significant burn and fire hazard risk.
New York injury lawyer Nicholas Rose remembers the initial recall back in 2009 when there were 11 incidents of property damage that included four fires.
Since the initial recall, LG Electronics Tianjin Appliance Company and the CPSC have gotten 16 more reported incidents, including 9 fires with damages ranging from $95,000 to $500,000. Apparently a short circuit can occur to the dehumidifier’s compressor causing the fire risk.
With fall season approaching and colder weather coming our way, this would be a good time to mention safety when it comes to space heaters. With the increasing cost of natural gas and heating oil many consumers use space heaters as an alternative heating source. Human error leads to many space heater incidents including placing them too close to flammable objects or failing to fuel, operate and install them properly.
The U.S Consumer Product Safety Commission estimates at least 30,000 residential fires occur each year due to space heaters causing about 180 deaths and 1000’s of injuries. Portable kerosene heaters and room gas heaters can also lead to deaths caused by carbon monoxide poisoning.
SPACE HEATER SAFETY PRECAUTIONS:
- Always use heaters that have been certified by a nationally recognized testing lab. New heaters will have modern safety features that older ones will lack. Operate them in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Never put a cord for an electric heater under a carpet and try to avoid using extension cords.
- Always put the heater on a level surface that is nonflammable, like a ceramic tile floor.
- A 3 foot safety area should exist between the heater and any flammable material like drapes, bedding and furniture.
- Make sure the size of the space heater is appropriate for the room size it will be functioning in.
- Pets and children must be kept away from any space heaters.
- Space heaters must be turned off when no one is occupying the area or the room is empty.
- Always shut space heaters off prior to going to sleep. Never have a space heater near a sleeping person.
- Never put gasoline in a space heater that uses kerosene. Just a small amount of gas mixed with kerosene can cause a significant fire hazard. And always use 1-K kerosene in your kerosene heater.
- Unless specified by the manufacturer, never use a portable propane space heater indoors or in a confined area.
Remember, smoke alarms should be installed on every level of your house. They should be located outside the main sleeping area of the home and in every bedroom. Having smoke alarms with carbon monoxide (CO) monitoring is essential for preventing CO poisoning. A good rule of thumb is when you turn back the clocks change your smoke alarm batteries.
If you have been injured by a defective appliance or sustained any type of personal injury, contact the Law Offices of Nicholas Rose for a free and confidential appointment. Call toll free at 1-877-313-ROSE (7673).
More Blog Entries:
CPSC Launches New Website to Reduce Risks of Harmful Product Injury in New York and Elsewhere, New York Injury Lawyer Blog, May 27, 2011.