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Nearly 38 million fire extinguishers recalled after death from car fire

The Consumer Product Safety Commission said that the 37.8 million fire extinguishers can become clogged or require excessive force to discharge and can fail to activate during a fire emergency. In addition, the nozzle can detach with enough force to pose an impact hazard per the CPSC. (Courtesy: CPSC)

Kidde has recalled millions of fire extinguishers with plastic handles due to failure to discharge and nozzle detachment following a car fire death.

The Consumer Product Safety Commission said that the 37.8 million fire extinguishers sold in the U.S. can become clogged or require excessive force to discharge and can fail to activate during a fire emergency. In addition, the nozzle can detach with enough force to pose an impact hazard per the CPSC.

CPSC said the death happened in 2014 after emergency responders could not get the recalled Kidde fire extinguishers to work.

"There have been approximately 391 reports of failed or limited activation or nozzle detachment, including the fatality, approximately 16 injuries, including smoke inhalation and minor burns, and approximately 91 reports of property damage," said the CPSC.

The fire extinguishers were sold at Menards, Montgomery Ward, Sears, The Home Depot, Walmart and other department, home and hardware stores nationwide, and online at Amazon.com, ShopKidde.com and other online retailers for between $12 and $50 and for about $200 for model XL 5MR. These fire extinguishers were also sold with commercial trucks, recreational vehicles, personal watercraft and boats per CPSC.

CPSC said the recall involves two styles of Kidde fire extinguishers: plastic handle fire extinguishers and push-button Pindicator fire extinguishers. The recall involves 134 models of Kidde fire extinguishers manufactured between January 1, 1973 and August 15, 2017, including models that were previously recalled in March 2009 and February 2015. Kidde said the extinguishers were sold in red, white and silver, and are either ABC- or BC-rated.

Affected fire extinguishers should be replaced immediately. Follow the link here to see the full list.

CPSC said to contact Kidde immediately to request a free replacement fire extinguisher and for instructions on returning the recalled unit, as it may not work properly in a fire emergency.

Kidde can be contacted toll-free at 855-271-0773 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. ET Saturday and Sunday, or online at www.kidde.com and click on “Product Safety Recall” for more information.

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