STEP STOOLS About 206,000 Target step stools with storage sold exclusively at Target stores nationwide and online at Target.com from January 2007 through October 2010 for between $25 and $30. The wooden step stools can break apart or collapse under the weight of the user, posing a fall hazard. Target has received 26 reports of the stools breaking or collapsing. Fourteen incidents involved children, seven involved adults, and five incidents where the user’s age was unknown. Two adults fractured their wrists, and of those victims, one also fractured her hip and pelvis. Additionally, six children and one adult suffered scrapes and bruising.
IF YOU OWN ONE Return it to any Target store to receive a full refund. Call 800-440-0680 or go to www.target.com for more information.
LAPEL PINS About 26,500 Love.Hugs.Peace lapel pins sold at Build-a-Bear workshop stores nationwide and online at Buildabear.com from July 2009 through October 2010 for $3.50. Surface paints on the lapel pin contain excessive levels of lead which is prohibited under federal law. No injuries have been reported.
IF YOU OWN ONE Return it to any Build-A-Bear Workshop store to receive a $5 store coupon. If it is not possible to return the pin to a store, you can contact the company at 866-236-5683 or go to www.buildabear.com for alternate instructions on receiving a refund.
B&D agrees to big fine connected to equipment failure
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission announced that Black & Decker (U.S.) Inc., of Towson, Md., has agreed to pay a civil penalty of $960,000. The penalty agreement has been provisionally accepted by the Commission.
The settlement resolves CPSC staff’s allegations that Black & Decker knowingly failed to report several safety defects and hazards with the Grasshog XP immediately to CPSC, as required by federal law. CPSC staff also alleges the firm withheld information requested by CPSC staff during the course of the investigation.
Federal law requires manufacturers, distributors and retailers to report to CPSC immediately (within 24 hours) after obtaining information reasonably supporting the conclusion that a product contains a defect which could create a substantial product hazard, creates an unreasonable risk of serious injury or death, or fails to comply with any consumer product safety rule or any other rule, regulation, standard or ban enforced by CPSC.
CPSC staff alleges Black & Decker knew, on or before May 2006, that the high-powered, electric Grasshog XP GH1000 was defective and could cause harm, but failed to report this to CPSC.
CPSC staff also alleges that Black & Decker failed to provide full information about defects with the Grasshog XP as requested in May 2006. Based on the incomplete information provided at that time, CPSC closed the case. The firm did not give CPSC staff full information about the extent of Grasshog XP defects or the mounting number of incidents and injuries until October 2006.
In July 2007, Black & Decker and CPSC announced the recall of about 200,000 Grasshog XP model GH1000 trimmer/edgers. By that time, there were more than 700 reports of incidents, including 58 injuries with the Grasshog XP. The trimmer/edgers’s spool, spool cap and pieces of trimmer string can come loose during use and become projectiles. This poses a serious laceration hazard to the user and to bystanders. The trimmer/edgers also can overheat and burn consumers. Black & Decker sold the Grasshog XP weed trimmers from November 2005 through spring 2007 for about $70.
The recall was reannounced in August 2009 with an additional 100 injuries reported. CPSC urges consumers with recalled Grasshog XP trimmer/edgers to contact Black & Decker for a free repair kit.
In agreeing to the settlement, Black & Decker (U.S.) Inc. denies CPSC staff allegations that it knowingly violated the law.