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Public warning on portable butane ‘lunchbox’ cookers 

4 March 2015

NSW Fair Trading Commissioner Rod Stowe is warning consumers not to buy portable butane ‘lunchbox’ type cookers due to safety issues, including overheating.

“We recommend consumers do not buy portable cookers of this type,” Mr Stowe said.

“Compliance certification for all current models of ‘lunchbox’ type gas cookers has been suspended by the independent safety certifiers and cookers of this type can no longer be sold lawfully in NSW.

“Up to 31 models of butane gas cookers have been withdrawn from sale as they do not meet Australian Standards. Retailers in NSW should no longer be stocking or selling these products. 

“Testing, undertaken at the request of NSW Fair Trading and other State gas regulators, has found a fault with the cookers’ shut-off valves, posing a risk that the devices may overheat and could explode.

“These cookers are lightweight and portable and are popular for use in camping and caravanning. They are inexpensive and commonly sell for between $15 and $30.”

Mr Stowe said consumers who have purchased cookers should refrain from using them. 

“If these products malfunction they can potentially cause serious injuries and I’d encourage people to stop using them,” he said.

“The cookers should be disposed of in a safe manner, with the butane cylinders disposed of through an appropriate community waste or recycling centre.

“Consumers who have purchased a non-compliant gas cooker and have proof of the purchase should return the product to their retailer and seek a refund of the full purchase price as soon as possible.

“Fair Trading is continuing to work with retailers, manufacturers and other states to ensure products are removed from shelves.

“I’d encourage consumers to notify NSW Fair Trading if they see any devices of this type being sold within stores or by NSW retailers.”

For consumer safety information and advice visit the NSW Fair Trading website or phone the Call Centre on 13 32 20.

Note: Affected product names and model numbers can be found at our Lunchbox cookers page.

Lunchbox cooker photo

Above: Lunchbox cooker

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