Gateway Announces Battery Recall

Thought all the laptop battery problems were over? Think again. Gateway recalled Samsung-made batteries due to a fire risk, while Toshiba reports a defective Sony-made battery sparked a laptop fire last month.

Gateway said it will recall about 14,000 lithium batteries shipped with Gateway 400VTX and 450ROG sold between May and August 2003. Samsung produced the battery cells, however Taiwan-based Simplo Technology was the manufacturer.

The computer manufacturer announced a battery recall in October which affected 34,000 battery packs manufactured by Sony.

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Consumers with the affected batteries are eligible for a replacement at no cost, with Gateway covering the overheadl. However a spokesman said the company expects both Samsung and Simplo to contribute.

So far, four customers have reported overheating problems with laptops containing the affected batteries. They can be identified by the tag "made by SMP" on them along with a part number 6500760 or 6500761.

Toshiba has also disclosed that a Sony-produced battery that was part of a massive recall announced last year caught fire in a laptop in the UK, the third to so. The two others were a incident in Brazil last December, and in Japan in April. No injuries have been reported.

The company had recalled 340,000 batteries across its Dynabook and Satellite lines in September 2006. With the fires, the company said it will attempt to do better in attempting to contact those who may be affected.

Efforts include direct contact with owners to inform them that they must check their batteries to ensure their inclusion in the previously announced recall.

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