Popular USB travel adapters pose electric shock, other safety risks

Adam Elements website

Beware the next time you use a USB travel adapter, the Consumer Council warns.

All ten models of USB adapters in a recent test failed to meet safety standards, according to a statement released Thursday by the group.

The council is also advising the public to abandon one model from Adam Elements, which puts users at risk of electric shock. It found that when one set of pins is plugged in, another set is exposed and could be dangerous.

The test also found that poor design in some of the samples could cause short circuits, and that all 10 heated to temperatures above the standard limit of 65k.

The SCMP reported that the samples came from Skross, Maxtron, Lifetrons, Zendure, Momax, Verbatim, ecDigi, Adam Elements and two unbranded producers. The adapters, which range in price from HK$78 to HK$460, are commonly sold in mobile accessories stores and on flights.

The Council said it is urging authorities to enforce manufacturers’ compliance with safety standards. In the meantime, the public should check their USB adapters to see that no other pins are extended when in use, and that they match the local voltage.

The test results come several weeks after the Electrical and Mechanical Services Department urged the public not to use three models of unbranded adapters over safety concerns, the Standard writes.

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