CPSC SUES BLACK & DECKER OVER DANGEROUS
TOASTER FIRE HAZARD
(Washington, DC) - The U.S. consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) today announced that its staff has filed an administrative Complaint against Black & Decker Inc. alleging one model of the firm’s Spacemaker under-the-cabinet toaster (Model T1000, Type I) presents a substantial product hazard. In its complaint, the CPSC staff alleges the toaster presents a substantial risk of fire. The Complaint seeks a recall of the product and extensive public notice of the hazard. Although the firm has announced a recall of the product, the staff is not satisfied with the firm’s recall program. The Complaint was filed after prolonged recall negotiations broke down.
The Complaint alleges that the design of the toaster causes food to catch on fire. When a toast cycle is complete, the glass door on the front of the toaster opens automatically and the rack containing the food extends out. If food items ignite, the toaster releases the flames when the rack containing burning food automatically extends.
The Complaint alleges that, when the toaster door opens, releasing the flames, fire can spread to the kitchen cabinets and their contents. This exposes the consumer to the risks of serious injuries and death. Black & Decker reports 242 incidents of fire with two minor injuries.
Black & Decker sold approximately 224,000 Spacemaker Optima Horizontal Toasters (T1000, Type I) from 1994 through 1996 for about $50 to $69. Consumers can easily identify these Spacemaker toasters because they are the only ones that have an "OPEN" button on the right side of the control panel.
CPSC staff believe that the toasters are dangerous and urge consumers to stop using them immediately. The staff urges anyone who is aware of any incidents with the Black & Decker Spacemaker Toaster or who wants additional information to call CPSC’s toll-free hotline at (800) 638-2772.