The Portable Generator Manufacturers’ Association (PGMA) says it has expressed concerns to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) about the agency’s newly proposed rule to impose additional carbon monoxide (CO) emissions requirements on portable generators. The association states that it strongly opposes such measures as they would put consumers at risk of unintended safety hazards, such as fires and unavailability of product.

PGMA testing found that the rule changes could drive portable generators’ exhaust temperatures above 1000 degrees Fahrenheit, the association says, calling the temperatures extreme and saying they would likely cause house fires.

Additionally, the PGMA notes that the proposed emissions changes would increase portable generator ownership costs, making it more difficult for consumers to afford.

Currently there are millions of generators in the market that comply with a voluntary safety standard, the association says — ANSI/PGMA G300-2018 — which is a comprehensive, accredited American National Standards Institute standard for generator safety that helps address CO safety concerns from misuse through a CO detection and automatic shutoff feature. PGMA cites third-party analysis from Exponent, Inc., an engineering and scientific consulting firm, showing generators that comply with the standard prevent over 98% of fatalities from misuse. There are currently over 300 portable generator models across 35 brands with this CO shut-off technology, PGMA says, with nearly 3 million units having shipped from PGMA member companies alone.

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