IBM raises smoke alarm over 63,000 monitors

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IBM and its Taiwanese supplier LiteOn Technology this week expanded a recall of 15-inch monitors which could
catch fire.

The risk affects tens of thousands of G51 and G51t computer monitors manufactured by LiteOn and sold by IBM, which were made more than five years ago (so how many are still in use?).

The original recall, announced on March 4, involved 56,000 computer monitors. The programme was more than doubled this week with the recall of an additional 63,000 G51 and G51t monitors that were manufactured through September 1998. The monitor's circuit board can overheat and smoke, posing a fire hazard to consumers.

Since 2001, IBM and LiteOn have received seven reports of monitors overheating and smoking, including one report of minor property damage and one report of minor smoke inhalation. No-one has been seriously hurt.

The recalled IBM monitors include the G51 CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) and G51t Touch Screen CRT models. The G51 and G51t monitors have the following model numbers on a label on the back of the unit: 6541-02N, 6541-02E, 6541-02S, 6541-Q0N, 6541-Q0E, and 6541-Q0S. The label on the back of the recalled G51 models also has a date of manufacture between June 1997 and September 1998. The "IBM" logo can be found on the front of the units.

Between 1997 and 1999, a total of approximately 700,000 G51 series monitors were manufactured by LiteOn Technology in Malaysia, China and UK for IBM. Approximately 377,706 monitors that could potentially include the faulty component were shipped worldwide, and about 118,098 were sold in the US.

IBM, MicroTouch Systems, and major retail stores across the US, including Best Buy, CompUSA, Office Max, and Radio Shack, sold the monitors from June 1997 through December 1998 for about $370.

Consumers should stop using these monitors immediately and contact the IBM Repair Center toll-free at (866) 644-3155 to confirm whether their monitor is covered by the recall. Consumers with a recalled unit will receive a free inspection and repair or a replacement unit.

There's more here.

A statement from the
US Consumer Product Safety Commission on the recall can be found here. ®

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