When Safety Equipment Fails

Published on January 10, 2018, by Matthew Sharp

Product Liability

When Safety Equipment Fails

The increasing number of consumer products on the market with dangerous safety equipment is raising many questions among safety experts. Every year in the U.S., millions of defective products that can cause serious injury and death end up on company shelves and are purchased by trusting consumers who rely on their safety.

Faulty Safety Equipment Puts Consumers at Risk

Graco, a well-known manufacturer of children’s products, has recently recalled over 25,000 child car seats due to faulty restraint systems. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), certain models of Graco car seats, called My Ride 65, failed to provide adequate child protection when restraint straps tore during crash tests. NHTSA says that these car seats violate federal motor vehicle safety standards. Graco was first notified of failed crash tests on March 29, 2016. After another crash test failure in early 2017, Graco issued a recall for the car seats.

John Deere utility tractors sold between March and October 2017 have been recalled due to unstable rollover bars on the back of the tractors. The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has reports of faulty rollover bars that become loose and fail in rollover accidents. The tractor recall includes American-made green and yellow compact tractor models 1023E and 1025R with the number printed on the tractor’s hood. Approximately 3,300 tractors were sold in the U.S. and 380 were sold in Canada. Although there have been no reported injuries in either country, consumers are urged to contact a John Deere dealer for free repairs.

Two types of Kidde fire extinguishers with push-button activation and black plastic handles have been recalled. Models made between 1973 and 2017 reportedly have faulty valves that can degrade and become separated from the main cylinder. CPSC warns that fire extinguisher nozzles can clog, require too much force to operate, or fail to activate completely. Kidde has recalled approximately 38 million fire extinguishers sold in the U.S. and another 3 million sold in Canada. Many fire extinguishers were sold under other brand names including Honeywell, Montgomery Ward, Sears, Sam’s Club, as well as on Amazon. According to the CPSC, there have been approximately 16 serious injuries resulting in burns and smoke inhalation, one fatality, and over 90 reports of property damage.