|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
|March 21, 1991
|Release # 91-055
General Electric Voluntarily
Recalls Drip Coffeemakers
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The General Electric Company
(GE) in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), today
announced the voluntary recall of certain GE and Universal brand drip coffeemakers
manufactured before April 28, 1984 which present a potential fire hazard.
The company believes that a fire hazard may occur when a purchased thermal fuse in the
coffeemaker fails to function as intended. About nine million drip coffeemakers bearing
the GE or Universal brand name were manufactured between 1976 and 1984.
GE has received approximately 400 reports of coffeemakers overheating. It has been alleged
recently that one fire caused by a fuse failure resulted in two fatalities and serious
personal injury to eight other people. GE has received claims that fuse failures also may
have been responsible for fires that resulted in one additional death and 15 personal
injuries. Approximately 375 of the claims involve property damage ranging in value from
$300 to $1.3 million. As an incentive, GE is offering owners $10 for each recalled unit
returned. A $10 check will be mailed when a unit is received by GE. GE will give consumers
with recalled coffeemakers pre-paid mailing cartons. In the carton will be instructions
that will tell consumers how to arrange for convenient pick-up. This new method of recall
is aimed at reducing consumer effort and increasing the rate of return.
Units made on or after April 28, 1984 are not involved in this recall. To determine the
date of manufacture, check the date code number stamped on the outside metal blade of the
electric plug. If the number is 418 through 600, the coffeemaker is not involved in this
recall. Other GE brand and Universal brand drip coffeemakers which are not involved in the
- Space Maker Drip Coffeemakers (catalog numbers that
include the designations SDC1, SDC2, and SDC3)
Owners of a GE brand or Universal
brand drip coffeemaker are asked to read both the catalog number on the bottom of the unit
and the date code stamped on the outside of the metal blades of the electric plug. If the
coffeemaker is a recalled unit, consumers should call toll-free 1-800-443-9000.
The recalled coffeemakers are not repairable, and owners should unplug the unit and stop
using it immediately. Consumers are being asked to check the automatic drip coffeemakers
at their home and place of work.
The CPSC is issuing this joint warning as part of its mission to protect the public from
unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with consumer products. The CPSC is the
Federal agency responsible for consumer product safety.
FOR TV REPORTERS/ASSIGNMENT EDITORS;
VIDEOTAPE ON THIS RELEASE WILL BE AVAILABLE
CALL DAN RUMELT AT 301-492-6580
GE CONTACTS: OGDEN MORSE, MARGARET DURANTE,
AND MARY-MIKE SIMONS MAY BE REACHED AT 212-614-4005
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety
Commission protects the public from the unreasonable risk 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 report product hazards to firstname.lastname@example.org.