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Two Product Recalls Due to Risk of Severe Burn Injuries

Just in time for summer, a product warning goes out so that people don’t get severely burned during backyard cookouts.

Here are the details: A jelly-like fuel made for ceramic firepots has been removed from store shelves this week after a pair of explosions severely injured three people in New York.

A 14-year-old Long Island boy nearly burned to death after a bottle of FireGel exploded in his backyard on May 28. Michael Hubbard of Riverhead was still hospitalized in grave condition with third-degree burns over much of his body. And on June 3, a New York City man nearly died and a friend was burned after a similar explosion.

Both accidents happened while people were trying to add fuel to pots that were already lit. Gel manufacturer Napa Home & Garden asked retailer Bed Bath & Beyond to pull the products after inquiries from The New York Times.

Napa Home & Garden says it plans to add new warning labels highlighting the danger if someone tries to refill pots that are already hot.

And here’s an other product recall that few people would think about as a source of potential severe burns: Hewlett-Packard has recalled an additional 162,600 laptop batteries after reports of burns–and even smoke inhalation!

The PC maker recalled 54,000 last May, and 70,000 in May 2009 as well. The latest recall affects batteries in HP and Compaq laptops, including models from the Pavilion and Presario lines sold in 2007 and 2008.

“The recalled lithium-ion batteries can overheat and rupture, posing fire and burn hazards to consumers,” the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said.

“Since the May 2010 recall expansion, HP has received 40 additional reports of batteries that overheated and ruptured, resulting in seven burn injuries, one smoke inhalation injury, and 36 instances of property damage,” the commission added.

HP warned customers not to assume laptops given the all clear in previous years to assume their batteries are safe. “HP urges customers with notebooks listed in the 2009, 2010 and 2011 announcements to validate the battery even if they have validated it previously,” it said.

You can click on the underlined company names in this article to see the burn-safety information these two companies have put on the internet.

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