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U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

Office of Information and Public Affairs Washington, DC 20207

January 23, 2002
Release # 02-086
Pressure Washer Recall Hotline: (800) 304-1316
CPSC Consumer Hotline: (800) 638-2772
CPSC Media Contact: Scott Wolfson, (301) 504-7051

CPSC, MCM International Announce Recall of Electric Pressure Washers

WASHINGTON, D.C. - In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), MCM International of Eden Prairie, Minn., is voluntarily recalling about 50,000 Black Cat electric pressure washers. MCM International imported the pressure washers from a manufacturer in China who installed counterfeit ground fault circuit interrupter (GFCI) plugs on some of the units, without MCM's approval. All of the plugs are labeled "WELLONG"; however, the pressure washers with counterfeit "WELLONG" GFCI plugs appear virtually identical to those with genuine "WELLONG" GFCIs. It will require a professional inspection to identify the counterfeit GFCIs. GFCIs are important safety devices that are intended to protect consumers against shock or electrocution.

CPSC and MCM International have not received any reports of incidents in which the GFCI plugs failed to operate. This recall is being conducted to prevent the possibility of injury.

The recalled Black Cat pressure washers have a sticker with a cat and the words "Black-Cat" on each side of the unit. The model numbers - either BC-2000 or TW-1750 - can be found on a label on the right side of the power station. The label also reads in part, "Made in China," "High Pressure Cleaning Machines," and the "Production Date" (which should fall between March 2001 and July 2001). The GFCI plugs have a green "Reset" button and a blue "Test" button - some plugs also have a label that reads "CONNECT TO INDIVIDUAL BRANCH CIRCUIT ONLY." On the back of the GFCI plug near the electrical prongs are the words "WELLONG" and "Rainproof."

Target and Menard's stores nationwide sold these pressure washers from August 2001 to September 2001 for between $85 and $100.

Consumers should stop using these pressure washers and call MCM International at (800) 304-1316 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. CT Monday through Friday to arrange to have their unit inspected. If necessary, MCM International will replace the installed GFCI plug with a genuine WELLONG GFCI plug.

CPSC reminds consumers that any electrical product that is used near water should contain a GFCI, in the plug or outlet. Prior to the implementation of the voluntary standard calling for the inclusion of GFCI plugs with high-pressure cleaning machines, there were several electrocution deaths and injuries. These incidents did not involve the Black Cat pressure washer.

Picture of Recalled Pressure Washer

Closeup of Label on Pressure Washer Closeup of Label on GFCI Plug