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Sony in trouble over laptop batteries again

Dell, HP and Toshiba on the recall hunt

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Three of the biggest laptop vendors are recalling some Sony batteries because of a risk they may overheat and catch fire, mirroring a similar recall that occurred two years ago.

This time, however, about 100,000 batteries are affected, a fraction of the 9.6 million recalled in 2006. Dell, Hewlett-Packard (HP) and Toshiba have already issued recalls for the batteries that were used in their products and the US Consumer Product Safety Commission said "consumers should stop using recalled products immediately."

The batteries in question were manufactured between October 2004 and June 2005 and to date there have been about 40 incidents reportedly globally of overheating, Sony said Friday.

Most of the incidents are believed to be due to manufacturing line adjustments made during the period that may have affected some batteries, Sony said. Additionally some may have been due to raw material flaws.

Of the 100,000 batteries affected, around 35,000 were used in laptops shipped in the US. By far the greatest number, about 32,000, were shipped with HP laptops.

The maker said it is recalling batteries that have a barcode label beginning with A0, L0, L1 or GC that were shipped with HP Pavilion dv1000, dv8000 and zd8000 models; with Compaq Presario v2000 and v2400 machines and with HP Compaq nc6110, nc6120, nc6140, nc6220, nc6230,nx4800, nx4820, nx6110, nx6120 and nx9600 computers.

Toshiba's U.S. recall covers around 3,000 Satellite A70/A75, P30/P5, M30X/M35X and M50/M55 laptops and Tecra A3, A5 and S2 computers.

Dell is recalling battery model OU091 in Latitude 110L and Inspiron 1100, 1150, 5100, 5150 and 5160 computers.

Consumers who believe they have batteries that have been recalled should stop using the batteries and check with their PC vendor.

An additional 2,000 batteries were shipped in the Japanese market and the remaining 63,000 went to consumers in other regions, including Europe and Asia. Recall notices for machines shipped in these other regions are expected to be issued shortly.



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