The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has issued an official recall for portable battery packs, imported from China by Brunton Outdoor Inc., of Louisville, CO. The lithium ion polymer batteries inside the power packs may overheat and catch fire during charging. However, no injuries have yet been reported.
Brunton Outdoor, which is not an ASI-listed company, has received two reports of batteries overheating and catching fire. One incident caused $25,000 worth of property damage, while the other resulted in a garage burning down with property and smoke damage to an adjacent residence. The packs were sold at retailers nationwide, including Adorama, Austin Canoe & Kayak, Moontrail, REI, The Clymb and others, as well as online at www.amazon.com, www.backcountry.com, www.bhphotovideo.com and www.opticsplanet.com.
“Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled power packs and contact Brunton (www.brunton.com) for instructions on how to return the product for a full refund,” said the CPSC in an official recall statement.
The recall involves the Impel and Impel 2 rechargeable, portable battery packs used to charge cell phones, tablets, laptops and other devices. The Impel has a rubberized shell in dark gray with orange or blue, and the Impel 2 has a shell in light gray with black trim. The packs can be plugged into an A/C wall outlet, a 12 volt car charger or an attachable solar panel for recharging, and they measure about 7.5” long by 7” wide by 1” thick. The packs have 16, and 19 volt outputs and a USB port, while the Impel also has a 12 volt output. The word “Brunton” is embossed on top, which is also the location of the power button and five LED lights.
About 1,050 battery packs were sold in the U.S., and about 40 in Canada, from February 2011 through May 2015 for about $300 each. While Brunton Outdoor is not an ASI-listed supplier, a search of ESP for “lithium ion battery pack” turned up 157 results from 30 suppliers.