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Gov't Issues Recall for Sony Batteries

Recall, affecting wider swath of laptops, becomes official for U.S. consumers.

(Washington) A voluntary recall of 340,000 laptop batteries made by Sony Corp., part of a voluntary global replacement program, was officially announced Monday in the United States.

Last week, Tokyo-based Sony said the record recall involved nearly 10 million batteries worldwide. The Consumer Product Safety Commission, the government's consumer-watchdog agency, issued the formal recall notice for U.S. consumers.

The batteries, some of them in the Vaio brand laptop computers manufactured by Sony, could catch fire, the CPSC said. Sony will replace the affected batteries free of charge.

The CPSC said that computers made by Gateway Inc. were also affected but would not specify a number. Dell Inc., Apple Computer Inc. and Lenovo Group have all recalled laptops in the past few months because of the faulty batteries.

Sony makes the batteries, but until recently the company had said its Vaio line of laptops was unaffected.

The U.S. recall was part of a voluntary global replacement program aimed at alleviating consumer concern, Sony spokesman Takashi Uehara said in Tokyo.

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