Nationwide Recall of Strollers Cites Amputation Hazard

A company that manufactures strollers has issued a voluntary recall, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), citing a risk of finger injuries. The company has received several reports of such injuries, including at least one partial amputation, due to consumers getting their fingers stuck in the stroller’s folding mechanism. The recall affects more than 200,000 units of several different stroller models. The company is offering a repair kit to consumers who have purchased recalled strollers.

The CPSC monitors reports of injuries caused by consumer products, as well as consumer products’ compliance with a range of federal safety standards. After a sufficient number of consumers report injuries caused by a product, a recall may occur. In the event of a voluntary recall by the manufacturer, distributor, or retailer of a dangerous or defective product, the CPSC may oversee the recall process. It also has the authority to order recalls on its own.

The stroller manufacturer, UK-based Britax, has received at least eight reports of injuries caused by three models of stroller. The stroller folds and unfolds, according to the CPSC’s description, using a folding mechanism with a release button and release strap. Consumers reported that fingers could get stuck in the hinge of the mechanism during the release and unfolding process. Injuries included partial fingertip amputation, broken fingers, and lacerations.

The recall affects three stroller models, and a total of about 216,000 units. The recalled strollers were sold in retail stores and online between May 2011 and June 2013, with prices ranging from $250 to $450. Consumers who purchased strollers subject to the recall are encouraged to contact Britax regarding a free repair kit.

State products liability laws hold manufacturers, distributors, and retailers of dangerous and defective products liable for injuries that those products cause to consumers. Federal agencies like the CPSC promulgate and enforce regulations relating to product safety, and those regulations may include administrative penalties for product defects, or for failing to maintain appropriate safety standards. Consumer claims for damages, however, primarily exist at the state level.

Three types of defects may give rise to a claim for damages under a theory of products liability. A design defect is a flaw in the basic design or formula of a product. A product with this sort of defect may be inherently dangerous, since the defect occurred before the product was ever assembled or formulated. A manufacturing defect occurs during the production process, due to an error or oversight by the manufacturer. This type of defect may only affect individual lots or units of a product. Finally, a marketing defect occurs after production is complete and the product has been introduced, or is being introduced, into the marketplace. This type of defect may involve incorrect or inadequate instructions regarding the use of a product, information suggesting an improper use of the product, or a failure to warn of a known hazard or dangerous condition associated with the product.

The products liability lawyers at Lebowitz & Mzhen are pursue justice for people in Maryland who have been injured because of dangerous or defective products. Contact us today online or at (800) 654-1949 for a free and confidential consultation.

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