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Search for Unsafe Cedar Chests Renewed After More Accidents

Search for Unsafe Cedar Chests Renewed After More Accidents...

WASHINGTON, March 30, 2000 -- The search for unsafe cedar chests is being intesified after another child fatality and two near-fatalities.

In 1996, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) and the Lane Co. of Altavista, Va., conducted a recall of 12 million chests with lids that automatically snap shut when closed following reports of six children suffocating inside the chests.

CPSC and Lane say they have since become aware of another fatality and two near-misses and are calling for a renewed search so that locks can be replaced on chests that have not yet been mocified.

All "Lane" and "Virginia Maid" brand cedar chests manufactured between 1912 and 1987 need to have their locks replaced. The chests are often handed down through families, and it is likely that many were purchased second-hand.

Lane is providing new locks, free of charge, that will prevent entrapments because they do not automatically latch shut when the lid is closed. The new locks are easy to install by consumers in their homes.

To prevent another tragedy, CPSC and Lane are urging consumers to check their "Lane" and "Virginia Maid" brand cedar chests. The brand name "Lane" or "Virginia Maid" is located inside the cedar chest. If the lid latches shut without depressing a button on the outside of the chest, the lock needs to be replaced.

Contact Lane toll-free at (888) 856-8758 anytime or access their web site at to order the free replacement lock. Consumers should have the chest's serial and style numbers, which are branded on the outside bottom or back of the chest, available when contacting Lane.


Handy Home Lighters Recalled

Handy Home Lighters Recalled...


WASHINGTON, March 9, 2000 -- In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Michael's Stores Inc., of Irving, Texas, is recalling about 213,000 all-purpose lighters. The lighters can leak butane when they are ignited, causing an excessive burst of flame from the tip or other areas of the lighter, presenting a risk of fire and burn injuries.

Handy Home LightersMichael's Stores Inc. has received 14 reports of excessive flame, resulting in three reports of burns to consumers' hands.

The recalled all-purpose lighters are refillable and contain butane. They are about 9 inches long and have a white plastic base; red, green or blue plastic handle with a black plastic trigger and on/off switch; and a metal barrel. A yellow label is affixed to the handle and reads in part, "DANGER: EXTREMELY FLAMMABLE CONTENTS UNDER PRESSURE...MADE IN CHINA."

The lighters were packaged in a cardboard display sleeve under the brand name Handy Home. The brand name is not on the lighter.

Michael's Stores nationwide sold the lighters from July 1998 through January 2000 for about $2. Consumers should stop using the lighters immediately and return them to any Michael's Store for a refund.

For more information, contact Michael's Stores Inc. toll-free at (877) 562-3816 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. CT Monday through Friday or visit