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The number of deaths caused by defective gas water heaters made by Paloma Industries Ltd. rose to 21 on Saturday after police said a man died of carbon monoxide poisoning accident in an apartment in Kitami, Hokkaido, in 1989.

A woman also died in the accident, but the man was put on a critical list and passed away later, the police said.

The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry had said Paloma’s water heaters caused 17 cases of carbon monoxide poisoning that left 15 people dead between 1985 and 2005, while Paloma had reported an additional 10 cases and five deaths.

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