Consumers continue to use recalled products, CPSC says

Tuesday, April 29th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Old power tools, drawstrings on kids' jackets, and loops on window blind cords kill dozens of Americans each year, despite government warnings and recalls, the Consumer Protection Safety Commission said Tuesday.

About 30 infants die annually in old cribs with wide spaces between the slats, the commission said, in another example on a newly compiled list of common hazardous consumer products still in use.

``These products may be in any home,'' Commission Chairman Hal Stratton said. ``They may be sold at yard sales or donated to charity or thrift shops. Some of them can be fixed, but most simply need to be destroyed.''

The list includes:

_ Cadet heaters. Some 1.9 million heaters have been recalled after being blamed for four deaths and $4.3 million in property claims. The recall hot line is 1-800-567-2613 or

_ Cribs. Older cribs have wide spaces between the slats, where a child's head can get caught.

_ Extension cords. Old cords may be frayed, may not meet current safety standards, may be easily overloaded, and may not have grounded plugs.

_ Hair dryers. Older models do not protect the user against electrocution if they are dropped in water.

_ Jackets. Older jackets and sweat shirts may have drawstrings around the neck or hood.

_ Power tools. Older tools are encased in metal rather than plastic, increasing the risk of electric shock. They also may have frayed wiring and plugs that are not grounded.

_ Window blind cords. Loops at the end of cords can strangle children. Since 1991, about 160 children have been strangled after getting caught in the loops. Free repair kits are available for blinds installed before 1995 by calling 1-800-506-4636 or going online at