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Coal heaters: thin iron sheet heaters, “three nots” heaters, life-snuffing heaters

January 23, 2013

Strengthening the implementation of standards for Beijing coal burning heaters –the sales of those which do not measure up to standards must be halted


Iron sheet heaters having the “three nots” stealthily appear on the market

As the cold season step by step advances, store managers begin stocking their stores, and soon take advantage of the occasion to put inferior heaters on the market

Industry and Commerce law enforcement officers have been inspecting the markets, and discovered 400 incidents of persons involved in moving inferior heaters. There is no lack of iron sheet heaters, “three nots” heaters [not having a trademark, factory name or address], and even “life-snuffing heaters.” The law enforcement officiers demand that store managers halt the sale of these heaters, and refund the money to purchasers. In accordance with the law there is a procedure in place for the officers to inspect stores and seize problematic merchandise to be used as evidence against the sellers.

The Commerce  Ministry is laying stress on inspecting the quality of the heaters being sold. The store managers must check the heaters upon delivery. The Yanqing branch office discovered coal fired hot water heaters without proper labels and seals of approval as required. Store managers did not press producers for the inspection reports. In Beijing there are still stores selling simple and crude heaters which do not meet the required standards.

Commerce Ministry law enforcement officers require that store managers request reports from the producers showing that the heaters have been tested and meet the standards. If any heater is withdrawn from the market, they must immediately stop selling it.

The Changping district branch office discovered and then sealed shut a warehouse with over a hundred heaters made of overly thin iron sheets, which were about to go on the market. These were inferior quality heaters made from old metal paint cans. These extremely crude products had no labels giving information on the factory which produced them. The authorities are currently trying to trace where they came from.

Whether heaters meet the standards or not is based upon the Beijing city 2008 notice: “Safety requirements for coal burning heaters.”

“If the flue is not high enough or wide enough, it is easy for soot to accumulate in the chimneys of these type of heaters. In a single day the chimney can get stopped up, leading to carbon monoxide poisoning. In addition, the metal plate under these heaters is not large enough nor thick enough.” The Beijing city light commerce quality inspection station assistant head Li Chuanhe continued, “this type of heater does not meet the required standards, especially when it does not come with a chimney, but, because of the low price, there are people who buy and use them. But before you use it, keep in mind that this is a life-snuffing heater.” Those stores caught selling this type of heater, and those middlemen who supply them to the stores, will be taken to court and punished by having to pay a fine.

The Ministry of Reconstruction and Commerce reminds people that when they buy a heater, 1) go to a standard store, by no means buy one from a street-corner travelling merchant. 2) ask the store manager to see the heater’s inspection report, and read it carefully. 3) make sure the heater has the requisite safety warning and seals 4) to the best of one’s ability, do not buy a simple and cheap heater. 5) Set up the heater strictly according to instructions and check it periodically.


Yesterday a netizen posted on the “Leave a message to the leadership” message-board the following, addressed to the Beijing municipal party committee secretary Guo Jinlong.

To Beijing municipal party committee secretary Guo Jinlong.

A netizen’s message: we need rented rooms to be safe

I and my girlfriend came to Beijing to be temporary workers. Through an intermediary we rented a newly refurbished room in a house in Haidian district Shuangqing Road number 14. On 12-09 I and my girlfriend succumbed to carbon monoxide poisoning while using the bathroom and taking a bath. Fortunately we were discovered in time, and were rushed to the hospital for emergency treatment. Now who can compensate us for the high medical bill? The house is rented through an intermediary to five parties.Neither the intermediary nor the landlord are taking any responsibility. The doctor suggested we be hospitalized for treatment, and pay for this and the emergency treatment by taking a loan out on a credit card, but we just don’t have enough money to stay in the hospital. After two days, we had to leave the hospital and return home. In this kind of situation, why is there no supervisory agency that deals with matters like this? The state is responsible for the citizens’ safety and security. When this kind of incident occurs, why is it that there is no regulatory agency that takes this seriously? If this is the result we get from spending money to rent a room, can Beijing be called safe? We originally did not think of addressing our problem to the leadership like this, but there is no appropriate government department we can make our appeal to. As for engaging an attorney and filing a suit, that costs money. We need help as soon as possible to resolve our problem. Since this incident, I am drowsy all the time, unable to stay alert. The doctor says this is an aftereffect and requires treatment. It is now 2013 –who will keep citizens safe –the state, the government, the law? (2013-01-04)

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