Tanning Bed Suspected Of Malfunction In Shock

Woman's Necklace Caught In Crack Of Unit

July 28, 1991|By Carol L. Bowers | Carol L. Bowers,Staff writer

County electrical inspectors are checking equipment in tanning salons countywide after a woman reported she was burned in a Bel Air hair salon's tanning bed last weekend, said G. Thomas Dick, chief electrical inspector.

"I was told that she was getting shocks off of this because she had a necklace that got stuck in a crack in the bed.

"It was kind of a fluky thing, but that's what accidents are," said Dick, who did not name the woman nor the salon.

While inspecting the tanning bed at the salon, the inspector said, he discovered it had no label from an electrical testing laboratory, such as the nationally known Underwriters' Laboratories, showing it was safe.

Dick said he advised the salon operator not to use the tanning bed again until proof of inspection was obtained. The salon operator has scheduled an inspection for this week, he said. County electrical inspectorsplan to visit the salon again after the inspection by the testing laboratory.

"A listing such as a UL listing means they've had the equipment in the lab and have put it through all the tests they have and labeled it, which means they're saying it's safe to use and that itwill work properly," Dick said. "We depend on those listings. Washers, dryers, furnaces: We wouldn't have time to test everything when weinspect a house.

"Anything that doesn't have a label on it, I tell electricians 'Don't hook it up.' "

Meanwhile electrical inspectors visited several tanning salons last week to look for other tanningbeds that don't have labels showing they've been tested for safety.

"But there are some places where they've put the beds in that we don't know about," Dick said, noting the county does not require the tanning salons to be licensed.

"I never heard of this problem with a tanning bed before. But I'm treating it as a piece of electrical equipment, because you can get shocked off any piece of electrical equipment," he added.

Dick said all tanning salons that had tanning beds which are not certified and labeled by a testing laboratory would be given the same advice: Discontinue use until the tanning beds havebeen inspected and labeled.

Dick said nearby testing laboratoriesinclude Maryland Electrical Testing and Electrical Testing Corp., both in Baltimore, and H&H Testing in Towson.

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