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Check that ice auger before you put it away: Thousands recalled by manufacturer

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With spring almost here, ice fishing season is at an end, but before anglers stow their gear until next winter they should take a close look at their ice augers.

The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) issued a recall for 3,000 of Rapala's StrikeMaster Lithium Lazer ice auger.

It was sold from late 2014 through January 2015 at Cabela’s, Gander Mountain and other retail outlets, priced at about $600. The black and red auger weighs 24 pounds and is powered by an electric motor and a rechargeable 50-volt lithium ion battery.

The trigger switch on the auger could fail and prevent it from turning off, creating a potential for injury. The CPSC said it’s received no reports of anyone being harmed.

Owners should return it to the place of purchase or return it to Rapala for a full refund or $700 credit toward a new product. The recall link is www.strikemaster.com.

The Star Tribune reported in 2012 that Rapala acquired auger-maker StrikeMaster Corp. of Big Lake, Minnesota. At the time, StrikeMaster had 10 employees, and held a 70 percent share of the handheld and a 50 percent share of the power auger markets in the U.S.

Based in Finland, Rapala VMC has 32 distribution companies around the world. Rapala USA, based in Minnetonka, is the largest in the group, with about 100 employees.

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