Japan Orders Sony, Dell to Investigate Battery Issues

Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry on Thursday ordered Sony and Dell to launch further investigations into the batteries that prompted Dell last week to recall 4.1 million laptop batteries due to a fire hazard and report back with their findings and possible fixes for future incidents by the end of the month, the Associated Press reports via the New York Post.

If the firms don’t report back to the trade ministry within the allotted time, they’ll face fines under the country’s consumer safety regulations, according to the AP.

The ministry claims that lithium-ion batteries Sony made for use in Dell laptops that were shipped to Japan burst into flames on at least two occasions in the fall and summer, though there were no injuries to people, the AP reports.

Japan’s ministry also highlighted the two firms’ battery issues in additional nations, and told Sony and Dell to look into the safety of Dell’s Latitude, Inspiron and Precision laptops imported to Japan between April 2005 and the present, according to the AP.

Additional producers of electronics in Japan were ordered to review their laptop batteries’ safety as well, the AP reports.

Dell already recalled any potentially dangerous batteries in Japan, according to the AP.

Sony said the batteries in its Vaio notebook computers don’t feature the same potentially hazardous flaws, according to the AP, though it is reportedly looking into an incident in the United States involving a Vaio laptop that caught on fire.

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