An Open Letter to the World’s Standards Groups

From:  George E. Kerr, March 17, 2003

First, I am very sorry that I was unable to attend our UL-2034 STP meeting in January; however, after having purchased my Airline Tickets and making my Hotel Reservations to attend, a family medical problem forced me to stay home.

My “Message” is really quite “Simple”, and as all of you that know me well, are Very Much Aware, I have repeated the SAME MESSAGE for so many years that it may sound “Like a Broken Record”, … it DOES however, continue to be TRUE.

All of the “Tweeking & Rewording” in the World, will not make UL-2034 a “Life-Safety”  Standard, until you REQUIRE: “Time of Manufacture”, … and “Life-Time” Reliability” Testing.

The present “Proposal” to go out to Retailers once a year to buy “Off the Shelf”  CO  Alarms  for “Follow-Up” Testing, … as a “Replacement” for Mandatory “Life-Time” Reliability Testing, as Defined, and set forth in CSA-6.19-01, …..  IS RIDICULOUS  ! ! !

Better than the NOTHING,  UL has done in the past; however, just stop to consider:  On October 01, 1998, UL began “Listing” C O Alarms to a New Revision of UL-2034, … and on March 19, 1999, about 5 ½  MONTHS Later, a CPSC RECALL Action required 650,000 RECENTLY LISTED CO Alarms, [as well as 350,000 Older CO Detectors]  to be Recalled.

650,000 Defective C O Alarms had ALREADY reached the Homes, [and Stores], in North America, … in just 5 ½ Months, ….. HOW MANY MORE would it have been a YEAR LATER ? … Equally Important, HOW MANY of the “RECALLED” CO Alarms were REALLY REPLACED, … and HOW MANY Homes in North America, that THINK that they have a “Good”, “Functioning”, UL Listed CO Alarm, PROTECTING their Family, … when in FACT,  the  SENSOR  IS  DEAD  ?

For ONCE, … do what is RIGHT for the Consumer, ….. NOT what is MORE CONVENIENT and “Cost Effective” for the Manufacturer.

While you are at it, … how about Establishing some “Accuracy Requirements” for CO Sensors. A Product that ADMITS that at Perfect Temperature and Humidity Conditions, the “LACK” of Accuracy is Plus 100%, and Minus 40%, … Should  NEVER BE LISTED.



Return to CO Standards          Return to Main Page


CO Experts
19299 Katrina Lane; Eldridge Missouri 65463-9102
Tel: 1-888-443-5377 Fax: 1-888-436-5377