Fair Trading Commissioner Rod Stowe is warning consumers about the potentially fatal risk of using non approved USB chargers following the recent death of a NSW woman, believed to be electrocuted by a dodgy device.
Reports suggest the woman was found holding a laptop and wearing headphones and sustained burns to her ears and chest.
FT investigators recently removed from sale a number of dodgy USB style chargers for mobiles, tablets, travel adaptors and power boards at a stall and phone accessory shop in the Campsie area in Sydney’s west. The trader at Campsie now faces possible prosecution.
Devices found by investigators had no insulation on pins or approval marks.
The risky devices do not meet the basic Australian safety standards and are often made of inferior plastics and other insulation materials.
“These devices pose a serious risk of electrocution or fire,” Stowe said.
Consumers must avoid these products and retailers should not be selling them, NSW Fair Trading warned today. Maximum penalties are $87,500 and/or two years imprisonment for an individual and $875,000 for a corporation.
Consumers in possession of non-compliant USB style chargers should bend the pins on the chargers and dispose of them immediately.
Do not purchase or use an electrical product that does not carry a recognised safety approval mark or insulation on the pins of the plug.
As a general safety rule, consumers should not use any devices while they are plugged in and charging.
Anyone with information about the purchase of any unapproved and non-compliant electrical or gas products should contact Fair Trading on 13 32 20.
For full details or to download further information on electrical products and equipment go to the Fair Trading website at: www.fairtrading.nsw.gov.au