August 15, 2006
It is the largest consumer electronic recall ever. Four million Dell laptop batteries have been recalled because of a serious risk for user's safety.
The Dell Company said the batteries that power the laptops could be a very dangerous fire hazard. If they get overheated, they could spontaneously burst into flames.
One man said his Dell laptop set his truck on fire last month. Dell said the recall is prompted by 5 other incidents like this one.
However, Albemarle County officials are not taking any chances. About 130 Dell laptop computers, used by county government staff, are going to be looked into and possibly recalled.
Officials said the numbers are expected to climb even higher, since the Albemarle County school division also uses the dell laptops.
"The laptops are really important for both the school division employees and [employees in] local government. So it's not a case where we can tell people just don't use your laptop," said Lee Catlin, the Albemarle County spokesperson.
County officials are trying to get replacement batteries as quickly as possible. For now they are asking the employees not to use the battery packs, instead plug in their laptops. County officials don't know of any students who use a school assigned dell laptop.
The Dell Company will replace the recalled batteries at no charge to the consumers.