HP pays $425,000 to settle claims over hazardous laptop batteries

The company eventually recalled 32,000 batteries, which a watchdog agency said were at risk of overheating or catching fire

Hewlett-Packard will pay US$425,000 to settle a claim that it knowingly sold laptops with hazardous batteries that could overheat or catch fire, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission announced Monday.

HP had learned of about 22 incidents involving the batteries by September 2007, but it failed to report the problem until 10 months later, according to the Commission.

"In at least two of those incidents, the products caused injury to consumers. In at least one of those incidents, the consumer apparently went to the hospital," the Commission said in a settlement agreement with HP.

The lithium-ion battery packs were shipped in new HP laptops or sold as accessories and spare parts. Because of the defect, they could overheat, posing fire and burn hazards, the Commission said.

Soon after it reported the problem, HP and the Commission recalled about 32,000 lithium-ion battery packs.

Around the same time, Dell and Toshiba also recalled lithium-ion battery packs, which had been manufactured by Sony.

In agreeing to the settlement, HP denied the batteries posed an unreasonable risk or that it had violated federal reporting requirements. With respect to the recall, it acted "in accordance with the CPSA and in its customers' best interests," HP said in the agreement.

The Commission said it still wants to hear about incidents involving the battery packs. Consumers can report them at the SaferProducts.gov website.

James Niccolai covers data centers and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow James on Twitter at @jniccolai. James's e-mail address is james_niccolai@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

James Niccolai

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?