Thursday, October 30, 2014

Tectron International Recalls USB Chargers Due to Fire Hazard

Recall date: October 30, 2014
Recall number: 15-016
  • 3-in-1 USB charger
Name of product: 3-in-1 USB phone charger 

The charger can overheat while in use, posing a fire hazard.
Consumer Contact: Tectron International toll free at (844) 582-3152 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. PT Monday through Friday or online at and click on Recall for more information.
Report an Incident Involving this Product

Recall Details

About 55,000
The 3-in-1 USB charging cable is used to charge iPhone4S/4G/3GS/3G, iPhone5, iPad mini/iPad4 and android phones. The 10-foot white cord has a USB plug on one end. The other end has 3 plugs: 30-pin plug for the iPad First Generation and iPhone 4S and earlier models; Lightning plug for the iPhone5 and later models and the iPad 2 and later models; and mini USB plug. The cable comes in a transparent sealed pouch. Item NO. USB29B is printed on label on the outside of the pouch.
Two incidents reported the USB charger melting. No injuries or property damage were reported.
Two incidents reported the USB charger melting. No injuries or property damage were reported.
Sold at
Distributors for school fundraisers from July 2014 to August 2014 for about $3.50.
Tectron International of Vernon, Calif.
AGI Fundraising, The Chip Shoppe, CPK Inc, Evergreen Fundraising, Great American Opportunities and Paragon Promotions
Manufactured in

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Meijer Recalls Halloween Projector Flashlight Due to Burn Hazard

The flashlight can overheat and melt the plastic handle.
Recall date: October 28, 2014
Recall number: 15-011
  • Signature Designs Halloween image projector with three lenses.
    1 of 2 photos
    Signature Designs Halloween image projector with three lenses.
  • : A label with the manufacturer's name and location, part number and date of manufacture is on the side of the handle opposite the on/off switch.
    2 of 2 photos
    : A label with the manufacturer's name and location, part number and date of manufacture is on the side of the handle opposite the on/off switch.

Recall Summary

Name of product: Flashlight

The flashlight can overheat and melt the plastic handle, posing a burn risk to the user.
Consumer Contact: Meijer at (800) 927-8699 anytime or online at and click on Product Recalls at the bottom of the page for more information.
Report an Incident Involving this Product

Recall Details

About 8,600
This recall involves a Signature Designs Halloween image projector. The projector is a flashlight with cap that holds special lenses to project messages and images onto a wall or other surfaces. The flashlight handle is black with the word Halloween and pictures of a skull and a jack o' lantern printed in white. The handle is about 7 inches long and holds two size C batteries. The cap is orange and is about 3 inches high and about 2 inches in diameter. The projector comes with three lenses: an orange lens with a black jack o' lantern, a yellow lens with a black bat and a purple lens with the words "Trick or Treat" in black. A clear label with "Signature Designs (HK) Ltd, Ningbo, China, 14-121-02, 05/2014" printed in white is on the side of the handle opposite the orange on/off switch.
Meijer has received one report of a flashlight overheating and the plastic handle melting. No injuries have been reported.
Consumers should immediately stop using the flashlight, remove the batteries and return it to the customer service desk at any Meijer store or contact Meijer for a full refund.
Sold at
Meijer stores from September 2014 to October 2014 for about $3.
Meijer Distribution Inc., of Grand Rapids, Mich.
Manufactured in

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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Ford recalls 205,000 crossovers for fuel tank leaks

Ford Motor is recalling 204,448 of its older Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX crossovers in in the U.S. and Canada to deal with corrosion in some brackets near the fuel tank that could lead to a gas leak -- and possible fire.

The recall covers some 2007-2008 Ford Edge and its luxury companion, the Lincoln MKX vehicles, Ford says. Only ones sold or registered in 21 midwestern and eastern states are affected.

The issue centers on reinforcement brackets at the point where the fuel tank is connected to the vehicle that can corrode. If they do, there could be a fuel leak, which could turn into a fire if the vehicle comes in contact with an ignition source. Owners are likely to smell gasoline, notice a leak or see the "check engine" light illumuinated on the dash.

Ford says it is aware of one fire from the condition, and no accidents or injuries as a result.
The recall covers Edges and MKXs built at Ford's Oakville, Mich., assembly plant from June 15, 2006 to Sept. 22, 2008. Of those, 186,024 vehicles are in the U.S. and 18,424 in Canada.

The recall covers vehicles currently registered or were originally sold in Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin in the U.S.

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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Fire Safety for Kids: 21 Fire Prevention Experts Share Their Top Tips to Keep Kids and Families Safe from Home Fires

Our very own VP Bill Driscoll was one of the 21 panelists chosen for a discussion on safety tips for kids:

There are many things in the world today that parents work hard to protect our children from. Fortunately for many of us, our home is a place that provides a safe haven, shielding our children from many dangers. But as many parents and homeowners know, there can be real dangers within the home as well: one of the most dangerous of them all is a home fire.

According to a recent report by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 366,600 home structure fires each year between 2007-2011. Tragically, these fires caused an estimated average of 2,570 deaths and 13,210 injuries to civilians of all ages.

Since we here at Safe Sound Family pride ourselves on providing valuable home safety information for families, we wanted to learn more about the important topic of home fire safety. We specifically wanted to find some expert tips from parents and fire safety experts on what to do to ensure your child is safe in the case of a home fire. To do this, we asked 21 parents and fire safety experts to answer this question:

What’s the #1 most important tip you can share to keep kids safe from home fires?”
We’ve collected and compiled their expert advice into this comprehensive guide on home fire safety. See what our experts said below:

Meet Our Panel of Home Fire Safety Experts:

  • Brent Faulkner
  • Keli Wilson
  • George Baker
  • Suzanne Garber
  • Jody Lamb
  • Bill Driscoll
  • David Barckhoff
  • Tamara Habib
  • Lance Luke
  • Juanita Allen Kingsley
  • Larry Wilder
  • Graciela Tiscareño-Sato
  • Jess Hand
  • Marshall Marinace
  • Samantha Boles
  • Justina Page
  • Mike Pinto
  • Maria Vizzi
  • Preet Anand
  • Judie Protesto Freels
  • Candace Scheets

Brent FaulknerBrent Faulkner

Fire Captain Brent Faulkner has 17 years experience in the fire service. During this time he has responded to numerous emergency situations including structure fires, wildland fires, hazardous materials responses, emergency medical situations, and numerous types of rescues. He has served on a Type 1 Hazardous Materials Response Team for over 10 years and is an expert in Critical Infrastructure Protection as it relates to terrorism, general security, and natural disasters. He also specializes in Emergency Preparedness for Homeowners and Businesses. He has a Masters Degree in Management, a Bachelors Degree in Occupational Studies and an Associates Degree in Hazardous Materials Response and another in Fire Science and is a Managing Partner in MBIntel, LLC, a website dedicated to providing high quality, customized information regarding home safety, security, and emergency preparedness.
The #1 most important tip I can share to keep children safe from home fires is…
Do not rely on the fire training they receive at school for your home.
Children receive excellent training at school regarding fire safety. However, this training does not necessarily mean children are able to evacuate their own homes during a fire. Most school settings are very different from the home. There are no lines painted on the ground or maps posted on the walls telling them where to go. A fire at school would be during the day, and the children are usually in groups, but at home it could be dark and the child might need to evacuate alone. It is therefore very important that families have their own fire training sessions, focused on their home.
A gradual approach to training your children is best. The first step is to plan two ways out of every room in the house. Physically walk the house as a family identifying these two exits. Then practice using these escape routes in a fun, non-threatening environment.
Once everyone knows how to get outside, a family meeting place should be identified. A tree, neighbor’s house or a mailbox are good choices. Identify a single spot where you will all meet. This is important to quickly account for all members of your home.
The smoke detectors in your home sound very different to the fire alarms at school. Let your children hear it a few times, and then practice going to the family meeting place. Once they have done this a few times, tell them you might sound it any time and they are to evacuate just like they would in a real fire. Depending on their ages, you may need to practice quite frequently. Having a practiced home fire plan is the most important thing you can do for your children regarding fire safety.

Keli WilsonKeli Wilson

Keli Wilson is the Founder and Director of Communications for AlertID, a social network that makes public safety information universally accessible via smartphone and email. She founded the company after being separated from her three children at an amusement park in 2009 for nearly an hour, at which point she realized there had to be a better resource for parents to keep their children safe. She has a dual bachelor’s degree in pre-medicine and biology from the University of Nevada, and has received numerous awards from law enforcement, including the Drug Abuse Resistance Education, an international education program that helps children stay off drugs.
I can think of lots of tips to help keep kids safe from home fires, but my most important tip is to…
Take all measures to eliminate the risk of a fire starting in your home.
The first step is to install and test smoke alarms on each level of your residence. This simple step can reduce your chance of dying from a fire by half. The next step is to review and practice escape routes with your family – you might not be able to get to your child in the event of a home fire, and it’s imperative that they know how to escape on their own.
Next, make sure matches and lighters are stored up high and away from children, preferably in a locked cabinet.
Finally, make sure your electrical wiring is checked by an electrician to ensure your home is at the lowest risk possible for a fire.

George BakerGeorge Baker

George Baker has recently retired from 32 years of service as a firefighter, paramedic and officer for the town of Mashpee Massachusetts, his last twenty years he served as Fire Chief. Chief Baker is passionate about fire prevention and has represented the Fire Chiefs of Massachusetts and the International Association of Fire Chiefs on numerous fire safety codes and standards committees. Passionate about the welfare of children, Chief Baker was a founding Director of the Boys and Girls Club of Cape Cod and active with local Scout Troops. Chief Baker now serves as a coach, mentor and consultant on leadership and disaster Management. Learn more about Chief Baker’s work at
If I was a genie and could grant one wish for a fire safety practice or device to protect kids it would be…
Living in a home (single or multi family) protected with a fire sprinkler system.
The NFPA (national fire prevention association) has done significant research and the majority of persons whom perish in a residential fire are very young or very old.
Smoke detectors are the first line of defense for most people but the very young (infants and toddlers) do not have the motor skills or the intelligence levels to escape on their own. Depending on the location and the intensity of the fire a quick rescue by the parents or caregivers may not be possible.
A residential fire sprinkler would extinguish the fire prior to lethal levels of heat and or deadly gasses from the smoke. Most fire deaths occur in the first three minutes of a fire. The best fire departments response times are three plus minutes after the fire has been discovered.
Parents should consider fire sprinklers when constructing or purchasing a new home.

Suzanne GarberSuzanne Garber

Suzanne Garber Chief Networking Officer at International SOS and a Board Member of the American Red Cross. She is also part of a Disaster Action Team for the American Red Cross, whereby every Friday night, she accompanies Philadelphia fire fighters to counsel and console victims of house fires who have been displaced with no where to go. In cases where a fatality has occurred, she along with a team of volunteers scours the surrounding neighborhood with new fire alarms and batteries.
It is estimated that while over 80% of homes in Philadelphia, where I am based, have fire alarms in them, in looking at the demographics of the zip code areas where the most fires (and fatal fires) occur, over 70% of those homes either do not have a fire alarm or the batteries have expired thus making the alarm non-functioning. So, my advice to parents is to…
Test their fire alarms and instruct their children to, in the case of a fire, get out of the house immediately whereby they can go to a neighbor’s home to call 911. Many times I have met children who have saved the lives of their siblings and elderly grandparents because they did exactly that.

Bill DriscollBill Driscoll

Bill Driscoll is a leader in the fire protection industry. He is an accomplished speaker in a group setting and has been a guest speaker for over 1000 groups, including fire departments, civic groups, churches, schools and businesses. Bill has written numerous articles and created several videos on the subject of fire safety and continues to provide home fire safety training for countless numbers of people and organizations. In addition, Bill is a U.S. Department for Homeland Security National Fire Academy Certified “Community Safety Educator”, an Administrator of fire safety and fire code certification, and has been a member of the Educational Section of the National Fire Protection Association since 1986. He is currently the VP of Dealer Development at DeTech Firesense Technologies.
The most important tip for children surviving fire is…
Planned and practiced fire drills.
Operation E.D.I.T.H – Exit Drills In The Home:
  • Draw an outline of your home.
  • Now add the rooms and label them. Show important details: stairs, hallways, roofs that can be used as fire escapes.
  • Choose a family meeting place and show it on the map.
  • Check each room for the best way to escape.
  • Test windows and doors.
  • Be sure that everyone has at least two ways out.
  • Escape ladders may be necessary.
  • Any security devices should open easily.
  • Always sleep with bedroom doors closed.
  • Find a way for everyone to sound a family fire alarm. Yelling, pounding walls, whistles, etc..
  • In a fire it is seconds, not minutes, that count.
  • Roll out of bed but don’t stand straight up because one breath of smoke or heated gases may be enough to kill you. And don’t drop straight to the floor because some deadly gasses are heavier than air and drift down to the floor.
  • Feel all doors before opening them, there may be fire on the other side. Never open a hot door! Ever!
  • Once outside, go immediately to the family meeting place and stay there! Never re-enter a burning structure for any reason.
  • Call the fire department from a neighbor’s house. Tell the dispatcher if everyone is out or not.
  • Begin with everyone in his or her bed.
  • Sound the alarm. Press the smoke detector test button. Yell FIRE! Or use some other signal that your family members will recognize.
  • Everyone should roll out of bed and follow their primary exit path while keeping their heads at doorknob level.
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Thursday, October 23, 2014

American Red Cross launches program to decrease home fire deaths

Seven times a day, someone in this country dies in a home fire. This morning, the American Red Cross launches a nationwide campaign to reduce the number of home fire deaths and injuries by 25 percent during the next five years.

The best way to do that is arming yourself with information.  Cindy Erickson, CEO of the American Red Cross St. Louis, and St. Louis Fire Chief Dennis Jenkerson explains what you can do.
It’s important to have working smoke alarms in your home.

Develop an escape plan and practice that plan.

Practice until everyone in your household can evacuate in less than two minutes
If you are trapped and cannot reach an exit, and if possible- hang a white sheet outside your window so the fire department can find you quickly

62% mistakenly believe that they have at least five minutes or more to escape a burning home – more than twice as long as they really may

18% mistakenly believe they have 10 minutes or more to escape

52% of parents with children have not talked to their families about fire safety

70% of families have not identified a safe place to meet outside the home in the event of a fire.

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles recalls nearly 750k vehicles in two campaigns

2014 Chrysler 300S
Related Gallery2014 Chrysler 300S
2014 Chrysler 300S2014 Chrysler 300S2014 Chrysler 300S2014 Chrysler 300S2014 Chrysler 300S2014 Chrysler 300S

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is recalling a total of 747,817 vehicles in the US in two separate campaigns recently added to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration database.

The first one covers about 434,581 units of the Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger, Challenger, Durango, and Jeep Grand Cherokee from the 2011-2014 model years with electric hydraulic power steering, the 3.6-liter V6 engine and a 160 amp alternator, according to FCA. In the affected vehicles, it's possible for the alternator to fail without warning and possibly cause the car to stall. According to the documentation submitted to NHTSA, the automaker began investigating the problem in August 2014 and has found possible evidence of one crash caused by the failures but no known injuries.

Customers will begin receiving notification about the recall next month, and obviously the repairs will be done at no cost to them.

The second recall covers a reported 313,236 units of the 2011-2013 Jeep Wrangler built between February 16, 2010, and July 19, 2013. An electrical connection could corrode and cause a short in models with heated power side mirrors. The company says that this could potentially cause a fire. However, there are no reports of crashes, injuries, fatalities or fires related to the problem known to the automaker at this time.

According to the documents submitted to NHTSA, the first reports of this came from three Wranglers in Canada in February, 2013. Testing showed that water was making contact with the connection and caused the corrosion.

To fix the problem dealers will move the connection to a new place and will add a water shield and dielectric grease to the area. The company will begin contacting owners in early December.

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Friday, October 17, 2014

Fuel leak risk prompts Lexus recall

DETROIT - Toyota is recalling about 423,000 older-model Lexus luxury cars in the U.S. because a gasket can leak fuel and possibly cause a fire. The move is among three global recalls that Toyota announced Wednesday totaling about 1.7 million vehicles.

The Lexus recall covers the LS model from the 2007 through 2010 model years, as well as the 2006 to 2011 GS and IS. Also affected are the 2010 IS-C and the 2008 to 2010 IS-F. All have Toyota's UR or GR engines.

The company says in a statement that a fuel system gasket can become degraded and leak. No fires, crashes or injuries have been reported.

The Lexus recall is part of a larger recall of 759,000 cars that also covers the Crown Majesta, Crown and Mark X in Japan. Those cars were built from January of 2005 through September of 2010.
Toyota says Lexus owners will be notified by mail starting in December as the company makes parts and develops a special tool for dealers to replace the gasket.

Also Wednesday, Toyota announced two other recalls:
About 800,000 cars in Japan, China and elsewhere in Asia to fix potential brake master cylinder leaks. The recall covers the Crown Majesta, Crown, Noah and Voxy models built from June of 2007 through June of 2012.

About 190,000 Corolla, Rumion and Auris models built from October of 2006 through October of this year. Dealers will fix a faulty fuel evaporator emissions control unit.

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EMS revives family pets trapped in home fire

Four family pets are recovering from injuries sustained in a blaze at a home on Butler just before 4:30 p.m. Oct. 14.

According to reports, neighbors called firefighters to report the blaze at the two-story, 1,900-square-foot home east of John R and south of Long Lake. Firefighters arrived to find dark smoke and fire showing, and they learned that two dogs and two cats were inside the home.

Firefighters entered the home to extinguish the blaze and search for residents. They determined that the residents were all safely outside the home, but the pets were still inside, said Troy Assistant Fire Chief David Roberts.

Firefighters encountered heavy smoke and fire on the second floor and started to extinguish the blaze. They then searched for the pets and found them, carrying them outside one at a time while the fire was put out, Roberts said.

It was not clear what floor of the home the fire started on or if any residents were in the home at the time the fire started, Roberts said.

Alliance Mobile Health paramedics, who arrived on the scene per standard protocol for structure fires, administered oxygen to the pets with special masks designed to fit over an animal’s nose, according to reports.

Neighbors reportedly took the animals to a veterinary clinic for treatment. Roberts said that the two dogs and two cats survived.

The Troy Fire Department was on the scene for approximately two hours. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Roberts said the home is not habitable and that the fire was confined to the home of origin.

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Thursday, October 16, 2014

American Honda Recalls Recreational Off-Highway Vehicles Due to Fire Hazard

 2014 Honda Pioneer 700 recreational off-highway vehicle (ROV)
Recall date: October 16, 2014
Recall number: 15-706

Recall Summary

Name of product: Recreational off-highway vehicles
Vegetation and debris can accumulate on the middle skid plate and make contact with the vehicle’s exhaust system. Dried debris can ignite, resulting in smoke or fire.
Consumer Contact: American Honda toll-free at (888) 888-3139 from 8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or online at and click on Product Recall Information at the bottom of the page for more information.
Report an Incident Involving this Product

Recall Details

About 15,400
This recall involves all models of the 2014 Honda Pioneer 700 recreational off-highway vehicle (ROV). ROVs are motorized off-road vehicles with a steering wheel, gas and brake pedals, bucket or bench seats, seat belts and an occupant protection structure. The recalled vehicles came in two-seat and four-seat models and were black with camouflage, olive or red hood and trim pieces. “HONDA” is on the front grill and rear tail gate. “Pioneer 700” appears on a tab on the sides of the vehicle just behind the driver’s and front passenger’s seats.  The model and serial numbers are on a certification label affixed to the top rear of the driver's side front wheel well. The following model numbers and serial number ranges are being recalled:

Model Number
Serial Number Range (All begin with 1HF)
Number of Seats
SXS 700M2 2AC
VE0225E4000006 to VE022XE4006304
SXS 700M2 4AC
VE0284E4000003 to VE0284E4001202
SXS 700M4 AC
VE0204E4000013 to VE020XE4006849
SXS 700M4 3AC
VE0268E4000004 to VE0269E4001503
Honda has received reports of 10 incidents involving fires resulting from vegetation and debris accumulating on the middle skid plate and making contact with the vehicle’s exhaust system. No injuries were reported.
Owners should immediately stop using the recalled vehicle and take it to an authorized Honda dealer to have the original middle skid plate removed and an updated middle skid plate installed free of charge.
Sold at
Authorized Honda powersports dealers nationwide from August 2013 through September 2014.
American Honda Motor Company, of Torrance, Calif.
Manufactured in
United States

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Safe at Home System activated!

"I fell off a step stool and broke my wrist. My husband was away at the time, but I pressed my emergency sensor immediately and help was instantly available. My Brother was called and I was en-route to the hospital in less than half an hour. It definitely is a good and secure feeling to know that you will not be left lying on the floor for who knows how long should you happen to fall or fall terribly ill."

Safe at Home System info

 Just had to pass on this great testimonial we received from one of our Dealers; John Hutchcroft. John installed a system with a medical pendant for Mrs. Arnold in Moline, IL. Thank goodness she had DeTech to protect her!

Friday, October 10, 2014

Fluid Handling Recalls Low Water Cut-Off Control Units for Hot Water or Steam Boilers Due to Fire and Explosion Hazards

Recall date: October 09, 2014
Recall number: 15-703
  • McDonnell & Miller low water cut-off control for hot water and steam boilers
    1 of 2 photos
    McDonnell & Miller low water cut-off control for hot water and steam boilers
Name of product: McDonnell & Miller Low Water Cut-Off control units for hot water or steam boilers
The ground wire and probe wires could be incorrectly assembled in the units by the manufacturer, posing fire and explosion hazards.
View Details
Repair Replace
Consumer Contact: Fluid Handling/Xylem toll-free at (866) 325-4204 Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT or online at and click on Recall Notice for more information.

Report an Incident Involving this Product

Recall Details

About 1,200
This recall involves McDonnell & Miller series 750 Low Water Cut-Off control units, which in connection with a water level sensor, are used as a primary or secondary safety control on hot water or steam boilers to signal the boiler to provide protection in low water conditions.  The unit is mounted on the outside of a boiler, generally near the boiler’s main electrical panel. They are black and measure about 6 inches high x 5 inches wide x 2 1/2 inches deep. The units have a green LED “On” light, a red LED “Low Water” light and test and manual reset buttons on the top. “McDonnell & Miller,” “Guard Dog,” “Low Water Cut-Off” and model numbers 750-MT-120, 751-MT-120, 751P-MT-120 or 752P-MT-24 are printed on a white label on the outside of the unit. Date codes G41 or H41 are inked on the inside back plate.
None reported
Contact Fluid Handling/Xylem for a free inspection, repair or free installation of a replacement low water cut-off unit. The firm is contacting purchasers directly.
Distributed by
Wholesale plumbing product distributors to plumbing suppliers from July 2014 through August 2014 for between $80 and $125.
Fluid Handling LLC, of Morton Grove, Ill., a division of Xylem Inc.
Manufactured in
United States

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PAB Two Recalls Bed Bug Heat Treatment Systems Due to Fire Hazard

Recall date: October 08, 2014
Recall number: 15-702

Recall Summary

Name of product: Bed bug heat treatment system

 The flexible, electrical conducting strip at the top of the heating element can break at the corners after multiple setups, posing an electrical fire hazard.

Consumer Contact: PAB Two toll-free at (866) 470-1755 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. MT Monday through Friday or online at and click on Important Product Upgrade at the top of the page for more information.

Report an Incident Involving this Product

Recall Details

About 1,700
This recall involves the ThermalStrike Expedition bed bug heat treatment system. Consumers place items inside the system to kill bed bugs that may be in the items. The system is made of white, corrugated plastic and has four pieces: a base, a folding four-panel wall, a lid and a temperature sensor. The base and the walls are held together by hook and loop fasteners. When assembled, the unit is a box 31 inches long by 18 inches wide by 24 inches tall. The rear of the base has a power cord and the female connector of a power cable attached. The insides of the wall panels have a heating element composed of black heating film connected to a white, flexible electrical conducting strip.  The male connector of the power cable is attached to the conducting strip and protrudes from the rear wall panel.  The system is energized when the power cables are joined and the power cord is plugged into an electrical outlet.  The words "ThermalStrike" and "Bed Bug Heat Treatment" are on the front of the unit. ThermalStrike is also printed on the heating element on the interior of the unit.
PAB Two has received four reports of the flexible, electrical conducting strip breaking, including one report of a fire in a unit and three reports of units sparking. No injuries or significant property damage were reported.
Consumers should immediately stop using and unplug the Expedition and register their unit online to receive an ASC Diagnostic Unit free of charge.  The diagnostic unit will immediately turn off the system when it detects a break in the conducting strip.
Sold at
Bedbug Central, Bedbug Supply, Protect-a-bed, Univar, pest control companies and pest control product distributors nationwide and online at from December 2011 through May 2014 for between $189 and $199.
JAB Distributors dba PAB Two LLC, of Wheeling, Ill.
Manufactured in

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KYMCO Recalls ATVs Due to Burn, Fire Hazards

  • KYMCO MXU 700 model years 2013 through 2015 came in black, green and red.
    1 of 3 photos
    KYMCO MXU 700 model years 2013 through 2015 came in black, green and red.
Name of product: All-terrain vehicles

In hot environments or high elevations, the fuel cap can fail to vent properly, causing the fuel to heat up and pressure to build up in the tank. The pressure can cause the fuel tank to rupture or the fuel to boil out of the tank onto the operator or hot engine, resulting in burns to the operator or a fire.
Consumer Contact: KYMCO USA toll-free at (888) 235-3417 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, email, or online at and click on Recall Information for more information.
Report an Incident Involving this Product

Recall Details

About 540
The recall involves model year 2013, 2014 and 2015 KYMCO MXU 700 all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) including standard, LE and Camo versions. The vehicles came in black, camouflage, gold, green, red and silver. The words KYMCO and MXU 700, MXU 700 LE or MXU 700 Camo are on the front of the hood and on each rear fender. The vehicle identification number (VIN) in the format RFBLU45U*xBxxxxxx is located on the frame behind the right front wheel. The 10th digit of the VIN indicates the model year: D = 2013, E = 2014 and F = 2015. ATVs with the last six VIN digits in the following ranges are being recalled:

Model year VIN RANGE (VINs begin with RFBLU45U*)
2013 DB120111 through DB130158
2014 EB120203 through EB130204
2015 FB120315 through FB320123
* represents a check digit that varies in each VIN
None reported
Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled ATVs and contact an authorized KYMCO dealer for a free repair. The original gas caps must be collected by the dealer to confirm the repair.
Sold at
KYMCO dealers nationwide from April 2013 to August 2014 for about $9,000.
KYMCO USA, of Spartanburg, S.C.
Manufactured in

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Does your family have a fire safety plan? (82 percent in US do not)

In March 2011, Maureen Aissa's Binghamton, New York, home caught fire in the middle of the night with her five children inside. Her family, who did not have a fire safety plan, struggled to escape. Her 17-year-old son Jeffrey did not make it out alive.

"It went like matchsticks, it just went within minutes," Aissa recalled. "You relive the night, then you second-guess yourself: 'What if I did this, maybe I should've done this.'"

According to new figures released exclusively to TODAY by the American Red Cross, most Americans have no idea what to do if their house catches fire. Fifty-two percent have never talked to their kids about fire safety, and 82 percent of families have never practiced a family fire drill, even though there were nearly 488,000 structure fires in the U.S. last year alone, resulting in 2,800 deaths.

Startling new statistics from the American Red Cross reveal how few Americans have a family fire safety plan. In a revealing experiment, a Connecticut family is tested on what would happen if they had a fire in their home. NBC national investigative correspondent Jeff Rossen reports.

Working with the Rossen Reports team, BullEx, a fire safety company, set up smoke machines and fake flames in the home of the Kay family of Connecticut to test their readiness for a fire emergency. The family did not have a fire plan.

The simulated nighttime fire started in the kitchen garbage can. Within seconds, smoke was all over the house. As the alarm sounded, the family's mom and dad stood up from their beds and headed for the hallway.

BullEx's Ryan O'Donnell said that was their first dangerous mistake. "There are superheated gases in there," he said. "If this was a real fire, a couple of breaths and they'd be all done."

Then the family's mom called to the children in their bedrooms: "You guys? Come out, come out, come out."

Each of the kids raced to their bedroom door and ripped it open. That was mistake No. 2, O'Donnell said: "There could have been a large body of fire right on the other side of that door. That's a critical mistake."

By this point the Kays were completely disoriented in the smoke, making it nearly impossible for them to find the stairs. Finally, they were by the front door — a way out. But then the mom made a potentially fatal mistake.

"I'm going to get the dog," she said, and went back inside the house, with the dad following right behind.

"You never want to pass an exit," O'Donnell said. "Especially to go deeper into the fire. This is not survivable."

When the Kays were finally out of the house, O'Donnell and Jeff Rossen went over their mistakes with them. For starters, the kids opened their bedroom doors without feeling the doors first to see if they were warm or not. If the doors were warm, they should have gone out a second way, such as their windows.

Second, the mom and dad stood up in the fire, when they needed to stay as low as possible. And, O'Donnell told them, they shouldn't have gone back toward the fire for the dog: "If you had a plan you would've known to exit the house first, then attempt to rescue the dog from the outside. Or another tip would be to let the dog sleep closer to you."

Armed with those tips, the Kays took the test again. This time they did everything right when the alarm went off — staying low, the kids feeling the doors, the dog with them — and made it out of the house much faster.

The Red Cross says there are simple things you need to do today to protect your family:
  • If you don't have them, install smoke detectors — at least one on each level of your house.
  • If you do have smoke detectors, test them today. The Red Cross says having working smoke detectors will cut your risk of death from fire in half.
  • Make a plan to get out of every room, and to get out of the house in less than 2 minutes.
  • Once you have a plan, practice it on a regular basis.
The Red Cross also offers a fire escape planning fact sheet you can use at home to prepare a plan.

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Friday, October 3, 2014

What 2 events in history lead to the start of Fire Prevention Week?

For more than 140 years, Mrs. O’Leary’s cow has been blamed for the Great Chicago Fire. The poor animal has been accused of kicking over a lamp that set the barn and then all of Chicago on fire on Oct. 8, 1871. The resulting conflagration killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 people homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures, and burned more than 2,000 acres.

That fire and an even more devastating fire northeast Wisconsin, the great Peshtigo fire, which also started on Oct. 8, burning down 16 towns, killing 1,152 people, and scorching 1.2 million acres, changed the way that firefighters and public officials thought about fire safety. On the 40th anniversary, then Fire Marshals Association of North America decided that it should be observed with festivities as a way to keep the public informed about the importance of fire prevention.

One hundred forty-three years later, we observe October as Fire Prevention Month and the week of Oct. 9 is Fire Prevention Week. Fire Safety companies and Fire Departments all over the country spread the word to make sure you're safe.

These kinds of festivities are meant to keep people aware of what they can do to survive a fire. One of the main tools is smoke detectors. They can give people the warning needed to escape a fire, but in many cases of fire deaths, they aren’t operational.

Nearly two-thirds of home structure fire deaths occur in homes where there is no smoke alarm or where smoke alarms are present but fail to operate because the batteries have been removed. Having working smoke alarms cuts the risk of dying in reported home fires in half and having automatic fire sprinkler systems in the home cuts the risk of dying in a home fire by about 80 percent.
Fire officials recommend that smoke alarms should be installed in every bedroom, outside each sleeping area and on every level of a home, including the basement. They should be tested every month and replaced every 10 years.

Mrs. O’Leary’s cow has aken a lot of lumps for the Great Chicago Fire, but she also should get credit her for today’s fire prevention effort. Considering what happened on Oct. 8, 1871, the 143rd anniversary sounds like an excellent time to make sure you smoke detectors are operating. Push the test button to see if they work. Change the batteries, if necessary, and put up more throughout your home.

Smoke detectors do save lives. Make sure yours is one of them.

23% of fire deaths occurred when present smoke alarms failed! Do you know if yours are REALLY working?

Smoke Alarms in U.S. Home Fires

Executive Summary

Smoke alarms have become such a common feature in U.S. homes that it is easy to take them for granted. Newspapers often report fires in which blaring smoke alarms alerted sleeping occupants to danger. These devices alert countless others to fires just as they are starting. Telephone surveys, including 2008 and 2010 surveys conducted for NFPA by Harris and a Consumer Product Safety Commission’s (CPSC’s) 2004-2005 survey found that 96-97% of the surveyed U.S. households reported having at least one smoke alarm. Based on these results, almost five million households still do not have any smoke alarms. Three out of five home fire deaths resulted from fires in properties without working smoke alarms.

In 2007-2011, smoke alarms were present in almost three-quarters (73%) of reported home fires and sounded in half (52%) of the home fires reported to U.S. fire departments. Homes include one- and two-family homes, apartments or other multi-family housing, and manufactured housing. When smoke alarms were present in fires considered large enough to activate them, they operated 86% of the time. More than one-third (37%) of home fire deaths resulted from fires in which no smoke alarms were present at all. One-quarter (23%) of the deaths were caused by fires in properties in which smoke alarms were present but failed to operate. Smoke alarms operated in fires that caused two out of five (40%) home fire deaths. One percent of the deaths resulted from fires that were too small to activate the smoke alarm. 
The risk of dying in reported home structure fires is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms. 

The death rate per 100 reported home fires was more than twice as high in homes that did not have any working smoke alarms (1.18 deaths per 100 fires), either because no smoke alarm was present or an alarm was present but did not operate), as it was in homes with working smoke alarms (0.53 per 100 fires).

The death rate from reported fires in homes during 2007-2011 that had at least one smoke alarm (0.61 deaths per 100 fires) was one-third (36%) lower than in homes that had no smoke alarms at all (0.95 deaths per 100 fires). Installing smoke alarms is the first step. It is important to be sure they are working. Surprisingly, the death rate was much higher in fires in which a smoke alarm was present but did not operate (1.94 deaths per 100 fires) than it was in home fires with no smoke alarms at all.
Smoke alarm failures usually result from missing, disconnected, or dead batteries.

When smoke alarms should have operated but did not do so, it was usually because batteries are missing, disconnected or dead. People are most likely to remove or disconnect batteries because of nuisance activations. Sometimes the chirping to warn of a low battery is interpreted as a nuisance alarm.

Half of the households surveyed in a 2010 Harris Poll done for NFPA reported they had smoke alarms in their kitchen. Two out of every five (43%) households reported their smoke alarms had gone off at least once in the past year. Almost three-quarters (73%) said the activation was due to cooking. Eight percent mentioned low battery chirps. 

If a smoke alarm in the kitchen is sounding too often, the problem could be solved by moving the smoke alarm. NFPA 72®, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code® states that unless designed specifically for the area, all smoke alarms should be at least 10 feet away from cooking appliances. If space constraints make it necessary to have a smoke alarm within 10-20 feet of the kitchen stove, either a photoelectric alarm or an alarm with a hush feature that can be temporarily silenced without disabling the alarm should be used. Smoke alarms should be tested at least once every month to ensure that both the batteries and the units themselves are still working. Conventional (not long-life) batteries should be replaced in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions, at least once every year.
More information "Smoke Alarms in U.S. Home Fires" report (PDF, 434 KB)
Errata incorporated April 4, 2014. Download the errata. (PDF, 21 KB)

Fact sheet
"Smoke Alarms in U.S. Home Fires" fact sheet (PDF, 94 KB)

Related article
Smoke Alarm Presence and Performance in U.S. Home Fires (PDF, 485 KB) an article by Marty Ahrens, NFPA, October 2010. This article was published online by Fire Technology on October 23, 2010

Report: NFPA's "Smoke Alarms in U.S. Home Fires" (PDF, 1 MB)
Author: Marty Ahrens
Issued: March 2014  Report includes statistics on home smoke alarm usage, effectiveness, operationality, and home fire fatalities in fires with and without working smoke alarms. Also includes home fire death rate with different combinations of fire protection equipment. Brief discussion of literature on audibility and waking effectiveness.

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Thursday, October 2, 2014

Women’s Scarves Recalled by Zazou Scarves Due to Burn Hazard; Violation of Federal Flammability Standard

Recall date: October 02, 2014
Recall number: 15-001
  • Zazou women’s scarf
    1 of 1 photos
    Zazou women’s scarf
Name of product: Zazou women’s silk scarves
The scarves fail to meet the federal flammability standard for wearing apparel and pose a risk of burn injury to consumers.
Consumer Contact: Zazou Scarves at (800) 472-2783 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, online at and click on “Recall” for more information or email the firm at
Report an Incident Involving this Product

Recall Details

About 3,800
This recall involves Zazou women’s sheer 100% silk scarves. They were sold in 20 different solid colors including black, burgundy, celery, chili red, coral, espresso, fuchsia, grey, indigo, iris blue, mist blue, olive, peacock, periwinkle, pink, purple, ruby, sea foam and white. The scarves measure 72 inches long by 20 inches wide. Zazou Luxe is printed on a tag sewn into the side seam of the scarf.
None reported
Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled scarves and contact Zazou Scarves to return them for a full refund. The firm is providing a pre-paid postage label to consumers for shipping.
Sold at
Specialty boutiques nationwide and online at and other websites from August 2012 through August 2014 for about $30.
Zazou Scarves, of Berkeley, Calif.
Manufactured in

Home fire extinguishers should be checked and replenished often

Although a fire extinguisher is the last line of defense in a home before calling firefighting professionals, many homeowners don’t have one or know how to use and maintain it.

“It’s better to prevent a fire than to have to put one out,” Henderson Fire Department Deputy Chief Matt Morris said. “Don’t leave food cooking unattended. Don’t leave candles unattended. Make sure you have smoke detectors and that they are working. A fire extinguisher should be the last measure, and it should be used to get everyone out of the house safely.”

North Las Vegas Fire Department Capt. Cedric Williams, the public information/community liaison officer for the department, gives frequent demonstrations on how to properly use a fire extinguisher for businesses and organizations. He recommends that each home have fire extinguishers and said the number and type depends on the size of the home and any special features that might be more likely sources for a fire.

“You should inspect your fire extinguishers monthly,” Williams said. “Check the expiration date; make sure the tank is undamaged; check that the hose is pliable and that there are no cracks; and be sure that the pull-pin is in place and properly secured. A pressure gauge on the extinguisher will tell you if it’s full and ready.”

There are five classes of extinguishers, each used for a different kind of fire. Class A is for ordinary combustible materials, such as paper, fabric and wood. Class B is for flammable liquids, such as gasoline or paint thinner. Class C is for energized electrical equipment.

“If you can take away the electricity by unplugging the device, they generally fall back to type A fires,” Williams said.

Class D extinguishers are for burning metals, which are unlikely to be encountered in a home fire. Class K is for cooking oil and is usually the type you want in a kitchen. The most common place for a domestic fire is in the kitchen, and the fires often are related to cooking.

It’s important to note that water should never be used on an oil fire, as water is likely to spread the oil and the fire further without reducing the fire at all.

It takes a great deal of water to put out most fires, so home fire extinguishers are generally small and use a chemical agent that smothers the oxygen source of the fire. Fire requires fuel, oxygen, heat and a chemical chain reaction, so removing any of those will douse the flame.

Most home fire extinguishers are single-use devices ranging in price from about $20 for a small extinguisher to around $50 to $70 for a larger one. A variety of extinguishers are available in home improvement stores such as Lowe’s or Home Depot. Manufacturers say most extinguishers should work for five to 15 years.

When extinguishing a home fire, Williams recommends standing 6 to 8 feet back from the front edge of the fire and working back. He uses the mnemonic device “P.A.S.S.” in his fire extinguisher instruction sessions.

“Pull the pin,” he said. “Aim the nozzle. Squeeze the handle, and sweep the front edge of the fire.”
Morris said homeowners should be aware of where the fire is and what they can control.
“If you decide to try to put the fire out, always leave your exit open,” he said. “Most times, the fire extinguisher should be used to hold back a fire so everyone can escape safely.

“Even if you get the fire out, you should still evacuate and call 911. If you have a significant fire, it can get into hidden spaces and walls. The fire department can make sure there’s no extension to the fire.”

Maintaining extinguishers

In order to keep your fire extinguisher in good working order, shake dry chemical extinguishers once a month to prevent the powder from settling or packing. Check the manufacturer’s recommendations.
Pressure test the extinguisher (a process called hydrostatic testing) after a number of years to ensure the cylinder is safe to use. Check the owner’s manual or manufacturer’s label to determine when an extinguisher may need this type of testing.

Immediately replace the extinguisher if it needs recharging or is damaged in any way.


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