HARDWARE STORES

Hardware store owners killed in auto wreck

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Ted and Karen Nichols, owners of Nichols Hardware in Purcellville, Va., were killed in a car crash on Sept. 5 after their SUV ran off a highway and hit a tree, according to an article in the Washington Post. The couple, along with five other relatives, were returning from an apple-picking outing to celebrate the 90th birthday of Doris Louer, Karen Nichols’s mother. Louer also died in the single-car accident.

The driver, Robert Louer, 65, of Florida, ran his Chevy Suburban off the side of Highway 55, over-corrected and drove over an embankment into a tree, according to Virginia State Police.

All of the vehicle’s passengers were taken to the hospital with injuries. Two of the fatalities, Ted Nichols, 64, and Karen Nichols, 63, operated the 100-year-old hardware store in downtown Purcellville, Va., which had been in their family for three generations.

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Swedish company acquires Michigan distributor

BY HBSDEALER Staff

Stockholm, Sweden-based Atlas Copco Tools and Assembly Systems has agreed to buy the sales and marketing operation of its distributor, Farmington Hills, Mich.-based Kramer Air Tool.

The agreement gives Atlas the rights to sales and service of Atlas Copco’s industrial tools in the state of Michigan. The acquisition price was not disclosed.

“We are very pleased to integrate the Kramer distributor network into Atlas Copco sales organization and thereby offer our customers an even wider range of sophisticated products, services and accessories. This will bring us closer to our customers” said Mats Rahmstrom, business area president of Atlas Copco Industrial Technique.

Kramer, founded in 1984, employs approximately 50 people and had a 2009 turnover rate of $17 million.

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CPSC issues recall on spotlights and sanders

BY HBSDEALER Staff

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Black & Decker, announced the voluntary recall of the Black & Decker Random Orbit Sanders.

The recall affects approximately 192,000 units.

According to the release, the black plastic disc (called the platen) that holds the sandpaper can fly off or break apart during use, and the disc, or pieces of the disc, can hit the user or those nearby, posing a laceration hazard.

Black & Decker has received 73 reports of incidents involving the platen breaking or falling apart, including 15 reports of injuries from flying pieces, one of which involved a serious facial laceration.

Also in cooperation with Innovage, the CPSC has announced the voluntary recall of its FIXIT One Million Candlepower Rechargeable Spotlights.

The recall affects approximately 1.4 million spotlights.

According to the release, the spotlight’s charging adapter can overcharge the battery, forcing it to rupture and leak battery acid. This poses a chemical burn hazard to consumers. The firm said it received 13 reports of incidents involving minor skin chemical burns and battery acid burn holes in upholstery, clothing and carpeting.

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