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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Stacey Reuben Mesa
(301) 504-0580 Ext. 1189
May 23, 1994
Release # 94-079

"Ground Fault Interrupter" Extension Cord Recalled Due to Electric Shock Hazard

PRODUCT: Approximately 39,600 GF1812 Ground Fault Interrupter extension cords manufactured by Columbia Wire & Cable Corporation were sold by Consolidated Stores in 1992 from its Odd Lots/Big Lots retail outlet stores in the midwestern and southeastern United States. The extension cord is white and 12 feet long. To properly identify it, consumers should look for the red button labeled "RESET" on the top side of the white two-prong plug, along with the embossed labeling, "WARNING: To reduce the risk of shock, do not immerse, remove, or modify this plug." The bottom of the plug includes the embossed labeling, "Cat. No. 6575, E-96425." The three-hole white receptacle at the other end has the embossed labeling "JC." The cord in part may be labeled "...E90165...18AWX3C Da Tung," or "E56274...18AWG/3C Cableton."

PROBLEM: The extension cord has no ground fault circuit interrupter, as advertised, but instead has a built-in immersion detection circuit interrupter (IDCI) plug. The IDCI plug will not provide protection from severe electric shock or electrocution if a short circuit or ground fault occurs. The cord may also create a shock hazard when connected to three-wire electrically grounded appliances such as metal drills or circular saws.

In addition, approximately 14,000 extension cords are unaccounted for and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) believes that some of these cords may have been sold by unidentified retailers.

WHAT TO DO: All consumers should stop using the GF1812 Ground Fault Interrupter extension cords. Consumers may call the Consolidated Stores Corporation at (800) 877-1253 to answer any questions. Cords purchased from Odd Lots/Big Lots stores may be returned to any Odd Lots/Big Lots store. To prevent injuries and to assist CPSC in identifying other retailers, consumers who purchased these cords from stores other than Odd Lots/Big Lots should stop using them and contact the retailers and CPSC by calling (800) 638-2772.

WASHINGTON, DC-- In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Columbia Wire & Cable Corporation, Brooklyn, NY is voluntarily recalling approximately 39,600 GF1812 Ground Fault Interrupter extension cords, due to a potential electric shock or electrocution hazard. The extension cords were sold in 1992 for $3.99 each by Consolidated Stores Corporation, Columbus, Ohio from its Odd Lots/Big Lots retail outlet stores in the midwestern and southeastern United States.

To date, no reports of electric shock or injury have been reported to Columbia Wire & Cable or to Consolidated Stores.

This extension cord has a plug with a built-in immersion detection circuit interrupter (IDCI). An IDCI is designed to detect the immersion of a connected appliance in water and to interrupt the circuit. The IDCI plug will not provide protection from severe electric shock or electrocution if a short circuit or ground fault occurs. In addition, the IDCI plug will not provide water immersion shock protection for two wire appliances such as hair dryers because the IDCI sensor wire is not connected. The product may also create a shock hazard when connected to three wire electrically grounded appliances such as metal drills or circular saws. This recalled extension cord is white and 12 feet long. To properly identify it, consumers should look for the red button labeled "RESET" on the top side of the white two prong plug, along with the embossed labeling, "WARNING: To reduce the risk of shock, do not immerse, remove, or modify this plug." The bottom of the plug incudes the embossed labeling, "Cat. No. 6575, E-96425." The 3-hole white receptacle at the other end has the embossed labeling "JC." The cord in part may be labeled "E90165..18AWGX3C Da Tung," or "E56274 ..18AWG/3C Cableton."

Consumers who purchased cords at Odd Lots/Big Lots stores should stop the use of the GF1812 Ground Fault Interrupter extension cords and return them to any Odd Lots/Big Lots store for a full refund. Consumers may call Consolidated Stores at (800) 877-1253 to answer any questions.

Approximately 14,000 extension cords are unaccounted for and CPSC believes that some of these units may have been sold by unidentified retailers. To prevent injuries and to assist CPSC identifying other retailers, consumers who purchased these cords from stores other than Odd Lots/Big Lots should stop using them, contact the retailers and contact CPSC by calling (800) 638-2772.

CPSC is announcing this recall as a part of its mission to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with consumers products. The Commission's objective is to reduce the estimated 28.6 million injuries and 21,700 deaths associated each year with the 15,000 different types of consumer products under CPSC's jurisdiction.

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 info@cpsc.gov.

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