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FEBRUARY 5, 1992

(301) 504-7908

Release # 92-045


Spring-Type Stomach Exercisers Repair/Recall Program Announced

WASHINGTON, DC -- In cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Hanover House Industries, Inc., of Hanover, PA, is voluntarily undertaking corrective action programs for two kinds of stomach exercisers: the "Pull-Up Exerciser" and the "Maxi Rower."

The Pull-Up Exerciser consists of a footrest bar and a handlebar connected with a spring that is pulled or stretched by the user to provide exercise. The Maxi Rower consists of two springs, each attached at one end to a common metal frame, and at the other end to separate handles. The user sits on a rolling seat with feet placed in a footrest that is attached to the frame.

Overextending the spring on either product may cause it to break and to separate from the footrest bar or from the handle- bar. Upon separation, the spring and handle can strike the user causing eye injury, broken teeth, bruises, and lacerations to the face, head, groin and other parts of the body. Injuries have also occurred from sharp edges on the footrest bar of the Pull-Up Exerciser when the end plugs of the footrest bar come loose. Injuries, including broken bones, have occurred when the frame of the Maxi Rower tipped or broke causing the user to fall.

The Commission learned of the problems with the stomach exercisers from a complaint to the Commission's Consumer Hotline. Hanover House Industries reported 26 incidents associated with the Pull-Up Exerciser (1.5 million sold nationwide, 1981-1988), and 12 incidents with the Maxi Rower (701,365 sold nationwide, 1984-1989).

Hanover House Industries is a catalog/mail order company. The program for these products applies only to those purchased by mail-order. Pull-Up Exercisers purchased from Hanover House Industries after 1988, and Maxi-Rowers purchased from Hanover House Industries after 1989, are not included in the program.

Hanover House Industries is offering owners of the exercisers covered by the program a free retrofit kit for the Pull-Up Exerciser. It includes a restraining cord that is designed to prevent spring breakage and separation of the handle- bar from the spring. The kit also includes step-by-step assembly instructions that offer directions on how to secure the end plugs to the footrest.

Hanover House Industries is offering owners of the Maxi Rower covered by the program who return a spring from the Maxi Rower, a credit for its original purchase price toward the purchase of another of its products.

Consumers may obtain (1) the retrofit kit for the Pull-Up Exerciser; or (2) a credit on the Maxi Rower for a future catalog purchase by calling toll-free 1-800-338-2670. Consumers should immediately discontinue using the Pull-Up Exerciser until the retrofit kit is installed. Consumers who do not elect to repair the Pull-Up Exerciser should discard those units so that no one else may use them. Consumers who have the Maxi Rower should save the spring for return to the Hanover House Industries for the merchandise credit, and discard the remainder of those units. CPSC's mission is to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury and death associated with consumer products. The Commission's objective is to reduce the estimated 28.5 million injuries and 21,600 deaths associated each year with the 15,000 different types of consumer products under CPSC's jursidiction.

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