Press Release from Consumer Products Safety Commission
News from U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
Contact: Rick Frost (301) 504-0580, ext. 1166. Release #97-003
CONSUMER PRODUCT SAFETY COMMISSION (CPSC) WARNS ABOUT DANGEROUS
FLEXIBLE GAS CONNECTORS USED ON HOME APPLIANCES
WASHINGTON D.C. Some older corrugated metal tubes used to
connect home appliances to natural gas supply pipes could corrode
leading to a fire or explosion, according to Chairman Ann Brown of
the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. These connectors are
used most often with gas ranges, ovens, and clothes dryers.
"The CPSC has received 200 reports of these connectors
failing," Brown said. "These failed connectors have been
associated with 35 deaths and 59 injuries. We are urging people to
have their gas appliances inspected to see if they have one of
these old, potentially dangerous connectors."
The connectors the CPSC is warning consumers about are older,
uncoated, brass connectors, which have not been made for at least
the past 10 years. The brass fittings on these connectors which
attach the connector to the natural gas supply pipe and the
appliance, were soldered onto a corrugated brass tube. The CPSC
believes that the solder can fail, causing a break in the
connector and resulting in a gas leak.
Many of these connectors may still be in use, and the CPSC is
warning consumers to have their connectors inspected. Because it
is very difficult to tell just by looking at it whether a
connector has been soldered, the CPSC recommends that ANY uncoated
brass connector be replaced immediately by a new stainless steel
connector or a new plastic-coated brass connector.
The CPSC warns consumers not to move their appliances in an
effort to inspect the connectors themselves. The connector should
be inspected only by a professional service provider. These older
brass connectors with weak, soldered connections could break if
moved, leading to an explosion or fire. Moving an appliance, even
slightly, if only to clean behind it, could cause a weakened
connector to fail.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission protects the public
from unreasonable risks of injury or death from 15,000 types of
consumer products under the agency's jurisdiction. To report a
dangerous product or a product-related injury and for information
on CPSC's fax-on-demand service, call CPSC's hotline at (800)
638-2772 or CPSC's teletypewriter at (800) 638-8270. To order a
press release through fax-on-demand, call (301) 504-0051 from the
handset of your fax machine and enter the release number.
Consumers can obtain this release and recall information at CPSC's
web site at http://www.cpsc.gov
or via Internet gopher services at cpsc.gov. Consumers can report
product hazards to firstname.lastname@example.org.