Microsoft has announced a product recall for over 14 million power cables for its Xbox console following safety concerns.

The replacement power cords are designed to protect consumers and their Xbox consoles from rare electrical component failures that can pose a fire hazard. Fewer than one in 10,000 consoles have experienced these component failures, and in almost all instances, any damage caused by these failures was contained within the console itself or limited to the tip of the power cord at the back of the console.

However, in 30 consoles worldwide, these failures are reported to have caused minor injury or minor property damage. In seven instances, customers reported sustaining a minor burn to their hand. In 23 instances, customers reported smoke damage, or minor damage to a carpet or entertainment centre.

In all regions except Continental Europe, Xbox consoles manufactured before 23rd October, 2003 require a replacement power cord. In Continental Europe, consoles manufactured before 13th January, 2004 require a replacement power cord.

In a statement Microsoft said "This is a preventative step we're choosing to take despite the rarity of these incidents, we regret the inconvenience, but believe offering consumers a free replacement cord is the responsible thing to do."

To order a replacement cord, consumers should go to www.xbox.com and click on the "Power Cord Replacement for Xbox" link. Replacement cords will arrive two to four weeks after the order is placed. While waiting for the new cord to arrive, consumers should turn off their Xbox consoles when not in use.

Customers who cannot access the World Wide Web should contact Microsoft at the appropriate free phone number listed here:

United Kingdom: 0800 028 9276