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CPSC Urges Consumers to Have Flexible Gas Connectors Checked

NEWS RELEASE from CPSC - U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, September 9, 1997, Release # 97-187

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is again warning consumers about dangerous, older flexible gas connectors used to connect home appliances to gas supply pipes. These gas connectors are made of brass, are uncoated, and can crack or break, leading to a fire or explosion. They are used most often with gas ranges, ovens and clothes dryers.

"Brass gas connectors have been associated with 38 deaths and 63 injuries across the country since 1980," said Ann Brown, CPSC Chairman. "We are urging any consumer with gas appliances to have their connectors checked by a qualified professional immediately."

Only a qualified professional, such as a plumber, heating contractor or gas company service technician, should check these gas connectors and replace them if necessary. CPSC warns that consumers should not check the gas connectors themselves. Moving an older appliance, even slightly, can cause the connectors to crack and result in a gas leak and explosion.

This type of gas connector has not been manufactured for about 20 years, but some still exist in consumers' homes. The older these connectors get, the more dangerous they become.

The brass fittings on these gas connectors, which attach the connector to the gas supply pipe and the appliance, were soldered onto a corrugated brass tube. The CPSC believes the solder can fail, causing a break in the connector and resulting in a gas leak.

Consumers with older gas appliances should immediately call a qualified professional to check and replace their gas connectors if necessary.

CPSC also recommends that all fuel-burning appliances be inspected annually to avoid fires and carbon monoxide poisoning. Consumers can save money by combining the inspection of the gas connectors with this annual heating equipment inspection. Consumers with questions about gas connectors can contact the CPSC hotline at (800) 638-2772.

This NEWS RELEASE was found at http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml97/97187.html

CPSC has also prepared a Safety Alert on flexible gas connectors (See Below).

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