Smoke alarms manufactured by Universal Security Instruments are being recalled because they may fail to alert consumers in the event of a fire. According to an ABC news report, the smoke alarms have a misaligned internal switch causing the alarms to not activate properly, posing a risk of failure to alert consumers to a fire. The recall affects Universal Security Instruments 10-year battery-operated ionization smoke and fire alarms with model numbers MI3050S and MI3050SB and with date codes between 2015JAN19 through 2016JUL11.
Details of the Recall
The smoke alarms are white in color and 5.5 inches in diameter. “Universal” and “Smoke & Fire Alarm” are printed on the front cover of the alarm. The label on the back of the alarm lists the model number and date code. Consumers are urged to inspect their smoke alarms to determine if they activate properly. One way to do this is to press the test button to see if it’s working.
If the alarm sounds, it’s working just fine. If the smoke alarm does not sound, it is important that you contact the company right away for a replacement smoke alarm. So far, the company has received 134 reports of failure to properly activate during installation. These alarms were sold online through specialty wholesalers and others from July 2015 to December 2016.
Potential for Deadly Fires
According to the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) three out of five deaths result from fires in properties that don’t have working smoke alarms. About 38 percent of home fire deaths result from fires in which no smoke alarms are present. Also, the risk of dying in a residential fire is cut in half in homes with working smoke alarms.
When a smoke alarm fails, the consequences can be devastating. Residents may fail to detect fires in their homes or worse, carbon monoxide gas leaks, which could be deadly. In fact, carbon monoxide is known as “the silent killer” because it is colorless and odorless and could even kill people in their sleep.
Product manufacturers have a duty and a responsibility to make items that are safe and effective. When they fail to do so and it results in an accident, the manufacturer can be held financially responsible for the injuries, damages and losses caused. Injured victims can file what is known as a product liability claim seeking compensation. An experienced product defect lawyer will be able to offer them more information regarding pursuing their legal rights.