On Dec. 8, 2002, a friend and I dined at Cody's Original Roadhouse at 11270 Fourth St. N, St. Petersburg. Since it was happy hour, my friend and I ordered drinks from the bar, one alcoholic pina colada for my friend and one nonalcoholic pina colada for me. It was my understanding that my nonalcoholic drink would be free. When the drinks were delivered to our table, there were two alcoholic drinks and one nonalcoholic one. Because we had been waiting for such a long time, we accepted all the drinks. During the course of the meal, both of us had a fly land in our drinks. When we brought this matter to our server's attention, all he did was to remove the drinks from the table. He did not offer to replace them.
When the bill arrived, I was charged full price for the alcoholic drinks and the virgin drink as well. I waited for the server to return to our table to have an adjustment made to our bill, but he had disappeared. The hostess station was unstaffed, so I simply signed the charge slip and left.
On June 7, I wrote a letter requesting a refund of the $9 plus tax that I spent on those drinks. In response, Cody's manager called and offered a $10 gift certificate, which I accepted. I never received it, so I wrote again Sept. 6. I did not receive a response to this letter. Would you be able to assist me? Reta Copeland
Response: Sari Tino, manager of the Cody's Original Roadhouse you visited, said neither she nor Michael Wool, the general manager of Cody's, was at the Fourth Street N location the night you had problems with your drinks. However, Wool did receive your first letter of complaint, after which he called you and offered the $10 gift certificate. Apparently the employee he instructed to send it, who is no longer with the company, did not. Wool never received your second letter and didn't know the gift certificate had not been sent. Tino said she would call you with apologies for the oversight and send you a $25 gift certificate.
We would like to add that the only reason we intervened was because the restaurant had promised you a gift certificate that never arrived. Otherwise, you would have received a reply that given the amount of time that had elapsed between the December incident and your June letter to the restaurant, we were declining to become involved.
The following products, distributed nationwide and in Florida, were recalled between Jan. 15 and 22:
+ 12,500 Browning CR123A lithium batteries; the batteries can short out, causing the flashlight's canister to rupture. The recalled 3-volt lithium batteries were packaged in pairs with Browning Black Ice 6-volt Xenon 6 LED flashlights, or sold separately in packs of two at hunting and sporting goods stores during December for $50. No other Black Ice model flashlights are involved in this recall. Call toll-free 1-800-637-0230 between 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. weekdays; www.browning.com/recall.
+ 72,000 bottles of acrylic primer, used to prepare fingernails before applying artificial nails, by Sassi America Inc.; the methacrylic acid primer is not in child-resistant packaging as required by the Poison Prevention Packaging Act. The primer, packaged in amber-colored bottles with black caps and sold in 0.25-ounce, 0.50-ounce, 1-ounce, 2-ounce and 4-ounce sizes, has model number 508, 509, 510, 511 or 512 written on the front of the label. It was sold separately and in kits at grocery and beauty supply stores from June 2000 through January 2004 for between $2 and $10. Return primer and kits to store where purchased for refund. Call Sassi collect at (847) 228-0334 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. weekdays.
+ About 14,000 "Mud Boggers" and "Street Shredders" Pump Up Racers by K'NEX Industries Inc.; the air motor in the toy cars can burst while being pumped up, causing parts of the motor or car to break off and pose a risk of injuries or cuts. They were sold at Toys R Us, Wal-Mart and Target stores between November and December for about $10. Call toll-free 1-800-543-5639 between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m.; www.knex.com.
+ President Brie soft-ripened cheese double cream, in green foil (herb) or gold foil (plain) in 6- and 7-ounce wedges by Lactalis USA; potential contamination with Listeria monocytogenes, an organism that can cause short-term illness in the healthy, or serious and sometimes fatal infections in young children, frail or elderly people and others with weakened immune systems. The recalled cheese has sell-by dates of "01/10/04 307" through "03/02/04 359." Return to store where purchased for refund. Call toll-free 1-866-883-8687; www.lactalis-usa.com.
+ Fifty 50 Apricot Spread, packaged in 12-ounce glass containers, by Chelten House Products; product may contain undeclared sulfites, which can cause a serious or life-threatening reaction in those allergic to sulfites. Return to place of purchase for refund. Call (856) 467-1600.
Sources: SafetyAlerts at www.safety
alerts.com; Consumer Product Safety Commission at www.cpsc.gov, toll-free 1-800-638-2772; Food and Drug Administration at www.fda.gov.; USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline, toll-free 1-800-535-4555; government food safety information at www.foodsafety.gov; National Highway Transportation Safety Administration's Auto Safety Hotline, www.nhtsa.dot.gov/hotline, toll-free 1-888-327-4236.
Action solves problems and gets answers for you. If you have a question, or your own attempts to resolve a consumer complaint have failed, write Times Action, P.O. Box 1121, St. Petersburg, FL 33731, or call your Action number, (727) 893-8171, or, outside of Pinellas, toll-free 1-800-333-7505, ext. 8171, to leave a recorded request.
Requests will be accepted only by mail or voice mail; calls cannot be returned. We will not be responsible for personal documents, so please send only photocopies. If your complaint concerns merchandise ordered by mail, we need copies of both sides of your canceled check.
We may require additional information or prefer to reply by mail; therefore, readers must provide a full mailing address, including ZIP code. Names of letter writers will not be omitted except in unusual circumstances. Letters may be edited for length and clarity.