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Five injured, one dead in tiki torch oil poisonings

BY HBSDEALER Staff

New Jersey state health officials have issued a warning about “look-a-like” jugs of tiki torch oil that can be mistaken for apple juice containers, resulting in accidental poisonings. So far, an 84-year-old woman has died and five other individuals have been hospitalized after ingesting a small amount of the torch oil. One 8-year-old girl was placed on a ventilator and has sustained permanent lung damage.

All five victims were New Jersey residents, according to an article in the Newark Star Ledger. The newspaper identified the look-a-like product, which comes in a clear plastic bottle, as Lamplight Farms, which sells through Home Depot, Lowe’s, Kmart, Wal-Mart and Target.

Anotice on the Lamplight Farms Web site stated that the Menomonee Falls, Wis., manufacturer “is urgently investigating reports of consumers ingesting torch oil that was apparently mistaken for apple juice.” These efforts include working with both state and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. The company added that “all products made by Lamplight Farms are clearly marked that torch fuel is harmful or fatal if swallowed.”

State officials could not explain why the incidents were clustered in New Jersey. “We’re trying to send out a nationwide alert,” Steve Marcus, a state poison control spokesman, told the Star-Ledger. For more information, visit the www.njpies.org .

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Niblock named chairman of RILA

BY HBSDEALER Staff

The Retail Industry Leaders Association has named its board of directors for 2008, with the CEO of Lowe’s set to serve as chairman of the trade group.

Robert Niblock, chairman and CEO of Lowe’s, will head the board of the organization, which serves as an advocacy group for the retail industry.

Niblock is joined by new board members representing various retail channels, including Eduardo Castro-Wright, president and CEO of Wal-Mart Stores; Richard Dreiling, CEO of Dollar General Corp.; and Eric Wiseman, president and CEO of clothing company VF Corp.

Other members of the group’s board of directors for 2008 are:

• Gregg Steinhafel (vice chairman) president and CEO of Target

• William C. Rhodes (treasurer), chairman, president and CEO of AutoZone

• Brad H. Anderson (immediate past chairman) vice chairman and CEO, Best Buy

• Sally Jewell, president and CEO, Recreational Equipment

• Robert Moran, president and CEO, PetSmart

• James M. Myers, CEO of PETCO Animal Supplies

• Jeffrey A. Rein, chairman and CEO, Walgreen Co.

• Sandra L. Kennedy, president, Retail Industry Leaders Association

• Joseph W. McClanathan, president and CEO, Energizer Battery

• Michael B. Polk, president of Unilever Americas; Unilever

• Jeffrey R. Smith, global managing director, Accenture Retail Industry

• Bruce Westbrook, national managing director, consumer and industrial products, Deloitte Consulting Deloitte & Touche

• Andrea J. Ayers, business unit president, Convergys.

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Simonton names new national sales vp

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Simonton Windows, a division of housewares and building materials giant Fortune Brands, has named Tom Danisch as its new vp-national sales.

Danisch will work with Simonton’s network of national customers and assist in growing the company’s business in various market segments throughout the country, according to a statement from Simonton.

Danisch most recently served as general manager of Illinois Tool Works’ Miller business unit. He also has held spots at Andersen Windows, Azek Trimboards and flooring manufacturer Armstrong World Industries.

Simonton Windows, based in Parkersburg, W. Va., has six manufacturing facilities in the United States.

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