|Publication number||US3811104 A|
|Publication date||May 14, 1974|
|Filing date||Mar 8, 1972|
|Priority date||Mar 8, 1972|
|Publication number||US 3811104 A, US 3811104A, US-A-3811104, US3811104 A, US3811104A|
|Original Assignee||Caldwell T|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (6), Referenced by (57), Classifications (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
United States Patent 1191 Caldwell SAFETY DEVICE FOR ELECTRICAL OUTLETS  Inventor: Thomas B. Caldwell, 50 W. Broad St., Columbus, Ohio 43215 221 Filedw Mar. 8, 1972 21 Appl. NO; 232,710
 US. CL...
 Int. Cl. HOlr 13/44, HOlr 13/54  Field of Search 339/36, 39, 75-79, 339/82  References Cited UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,659,059 11/1953 Johnson 339 75' P 3,159,446 l2/l964 Protzmann 339/82 3,363,216 H1968 Benedetto 339 39 2,716,225 8/1955 McCubbin..- 339/77 m 3,811,104 14 1 May 14, 1974 Dalton 339/75 P Sadasky 339/77 Primary Examiner-Joseph H. McGlynn Attorney, Agent, or FirmPalmer Fultz 57 ABSTRACT A safety device for electrical outlets which comprises an attachment for retaining electrical plugs in the sockets of a receptacle so as to preclude the inadvertent removal thereof asfwell as the insertion of foreign objects into the receptacles. Moreover, the present safety attachment is further adapted to provide the same safety feature in the event that only one electrical plug is mounted in a duplex receptacle in which instance the unused socket is covered to prevent the insertion of foreign objects.
3 Claims, 6 Drawing Figures taining plugs in one or more sockets of such outlets.
In general, the device of the present invention is applicable to an electrical outlet of the type that includes a wall type receptacle that includes spaced sockets, a cover, and a hole intermediate said sockets for mounting said cover in the conventional manner.
In accordance with one aspect of the present invention, the apparatus comprises a plug retaining plate means adapted to overly two electrical plugs when disposed in said spaced sockets so as to prevent inadvertent disconnection thereof, and to preclude inadvertent removal of the plugs by small children.
In accordance with a second aspect of the present invention, a modified plug retaining plate is provided for use when only one plug is mounted in a duplex 'type receptacle, said modified retaining plate being adapted to cover the empty socket, as well as retain-the single plug, thereby precluding the insertion by small children of foreign objects into the empty socket.
It is therefor an object of the present invention to provide a safety attachment for an electrical outlet that prevents the removal of plugs from the sockets as well as the insertion of foreign objects into the empty sockets thereof.
Further objects and advantages of the present invention will be apparent from the following description, reference being had to the accompanying. drawings wherein preferred forms of embodiments-of the invention are clearly shown.
IN, THE DRAWINGS:
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an electrical outlet provided with a safety attachment constructed in accordance with the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a perspective view of a second electrical outlet with a single plug mounted thereon and provided with a second safety attachment comprising a modification of the present invention;
FIG. 3 is a plan view of the safety attachment of FIG.
FIG. 4 is a side elevational view of the safety attachment of FIG. I;'
' FIG. 5 is a plan view of the safety attachment of FIG.
FIG. 6 is a side elevational view of the safety attachment of FIG. 2.
. adapted to overlie a plug mounted in one of said sockets l2 and 14.
The inventive combination further includes a plate mounting hole 22 and a hole 28 in the attachment, said holes 22 and 28 being aligned when said attachment 24 is in a plug retaining position.
The inventive combination further includes a threaded element 38 adapted to be extendedfreely through the hole 28 in the attachment and into threaded engagement with the cover mounting hole in spaced protrusions and the receptacle.
This embodiment indicated generally at 24 includes oppositely extending co-planer protrusions 30 and 30 which simultaneously overlie a second plug 18.
When the threaded element 38 is extended freely through hole 28' in the attachment and into threaded engagement with the threaded hole of the receptacle both of the plugs 16 and 18 are securely retained therein against accidental disengagement and, indeed, removal therefrom by a child whose attention has been directed to the electrical outlet.
Reference is next made toa second modification of the present invention wherein a second plug retaining plate 32 is shown in FIG. 2.
In this embodiment the plug retaining plate includes spaced projections 34 which serve to retain the single plug 16 within the socket by engagement of a threaded element 40 in a hole 22 in the receptacle.
Since only one plug has been inserted into the receptacle it is an object of this invention to prevent the other receptacle 14, FIG. 2, from being available to small children for the dangerous insertion of foreign objects.
- In this connection attention is called to FIGS. 2, 5, and 6 which show a cover plate 36 which is arranged to closely cover said other receptacle 14 when the threaded element 40 is used to retain the plug retaining plate 32 in a locked position wherein plug 16 is restrained against removal. Y
In view of the aboveit will be seen that with the embodiment of FIG. I as well as with the embodiment of FIG. 2 the plug or plugs will be firmly retained within the sockets of the receptacle such that it is substantially impossible for a small child to remove them and, moreover, in the event that only one of the plugs, such as plug 16 is inserted, then in that event the attachment 32 not only serves to retain the plug 16 but in addition serves to completely cover the second socket 14 of the receptacle such that the insertion of a foreign object which would cause a short is precluded.
1. An attachment for an electrical outlet of the typ that includes a receptacle forming spaced sockets, a i
cover and a cover mounting hole intermediate said sockets, said attachment comprising a unitary plug retaining plate formed with spaced protrusions forming an open-ended slot for overlying a plug mounted in one of said sockets and a plate mounting hole aligned with said cover mounting hole in said receptacle; and a threaded element extended through said plate mounting hole and said cover and in threaded engagement with said cover mounting hole in said receptacle.
2. The attachment defined in claim 1 wherein said plug retaining plate includes a second set of spaced unitary protrusions for overlying a second plug mounted in the other of said sockets.
3. An attachment for an electrical outlet of the type that includes a receptacle forming spaced sockets and a cover mounting hole intermediate said sockets, said attachment comprising a unitary plug retaining plate formed with spaced protrusions for overlying a plug mounted in one of said sockets and a plate mounting hole aligned with said cover mounting hole in said receptacle; and a threaded element extended through said plate mounting hole and in threaded engagement with said cover mounting hole in said receptacle, said plug retaining plate including a unitary socket covering portion for directly overlying the other of said sockets when empty, and a central offset portion between said said socket covering portion.
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|U.S. Classification||439/135, 439/362, 439/373|