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Aug 13, 2009

Poisonous Lead (Pb) in Electrical Power Cords

by J. Robert Burgoyne — last modified Aug 14, 2009 03:13 PM

Did you know that many household power cords contain lead (Pb), a highly poisonous substance? I was recently surprised to read the warning label on an extension cord I purchased.


Ace Hardware Extension Cord Label with Warning About Lead The adjacent image is a scan of the label attached to an electrical power cord I recently purchased.

Click the image to see it full-size and note the warning regarding the power cord's lead content.

The warning label says:

"WARNING: The power cord on this product contains lead, a chemical known to the State of California to cause birth defects or other reproductive harm. Wash hands after handling."

Sadly, many power cords still contain lead. If you use a power cord that contains lead with your vacuum cleaner, you're potentially brushing the cord over your carpet where your children and pets play. Keep reading - there's a way around this.

How dangerous is lead? You might want to read this excerpt from Wikipedia or this Wikipedia article about Lead Poisoning. There's also a group, the Coalition to End Childhood Lead Poisoning with useful information on their website.

Help is On The Way to Remove Lead from Your Life

There is a formal initiative to stop the use of hazardous materials in electrical devices. It's called the Reduction of Hazardous Substances Directive, or RoHS. The goal is to remove hazardous substances like lead from electrical devices. RoHS took effect in 2006 in the European Union, via EU Directive 2002/95/EC. RoHS compliance is not mandatory in the USA, but manufacturers can voluntarily comply with the RoHS directive at their discretion - and help is on the way.

Not every power cable or surge protector contains lead.

I recently purchased a Tripp Lite Surge Protector, model: TLP602, because the packaging had an RoHS Compliant logo. I subsequently called Tripp Lite to ask them about their RoHS policy and was directed to their website, where I found:

  • Tripp Lite's formal declaration that if they use the RoHS logo on a product, the product will in fact be compliant with EU Directive 2002/95/EC (RoHS)

True Blade will be doing additional research into the use of lead in electrical devices with the goal of helping offices and families stay safe, healthy, and lead-free.

Register your contact information with us if you would like to receive more information in the future regarding our findings.

Aug 11, 2009

Penny Stock Promoters Now Providing Useful Disclaimers

by J. Robert Burgoyne — last modified Aug 12, 2009 11:00 AM

I received an unsolicited email this morning, promoting a low-cost stock. Interestingly, this solicitation had a disclaimer at the end, telling me: "We want you to know that while our ad says buy we are selling".

The email is promoting the stock of a company whose revenue for the period ending March 31, 2009 was $0. I researched the company's SEC filings and found that the company's total assets as of March 31, 2009 are $57. 

What I found insightful about this promotion was the disclaimer at the bottom of the email; the highlighting is mine.

CYA:   This is an ad.    We were paid get this message to you.    We only
take on projects we feel have upside and that are willing to pay us.  We
never tell people to sell.    The info in this piece is based on what the
Company told us.  What we believe MAY happen in the future may not come to
pass this is a risky business.     We don't hold any licenses and this has
not been reviewed and signed off on by anyone.    Do not get this or any
other pick unless you are able to pay the band and handle a complete loss
We were paid 20k for this report.     Do your homework and
research any pick before putting your hard earned cash in it and talk to
your own experts.    Basically if you decide to buy in it's your decision
and you are on your own.   We want you to know that while our ad says buy
we are selling
so you can factor it in to your decision and we don't get in

Needless to say, ignore this and similar stock promotions. If you receive an inappropriate solicitation, you may want to file a complaint with the SEC.